ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201910.0346.v1
Subject: Mathematics & Computer Science, Probability And Statistics Keywords: Prevention of Mother-to-Child transmission (PMTCT); Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV); Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDs); Poisson; negative binomial; logistic; regression
Online: 30 October 2019 (04:06:36 CET)
In Sub-Saharan African Countries such as Nigeria with high prevalence rate, Child HIV/AIDs acquired through Mother-to-Child transmission (MTCT) can be largely prevented by using a well-established prevention programme and scheme. This study examined factors that can enhanced Prevention of Mother-to-Child transmission (PMTCT) in Nasarawa State. To achieve this, structured questionnaire were used to collect data from one hundred and sixteen (116) women attending two (2) primary facilities and two (2) secondary facilities in the State. This study utilized methods of Poisson Regression, Negative Binomial Regression and Logistic Regression Analyses. Results revealed that women with at least a secondary school education, women with husband in military and women with perceived confidentiality of their HIV status significantly enhanced PMTCT of HIV in Nasarawa State while significant proportion of the women attest to the fact that drugs are available in the facilities (p-value=0.0000<0.05) . Other factors include mother income level, willingness to continue with PMTCT programme and women in support group can also enhanced PMTCT though they are not significant. This study recommends that the factors identified should be explored by NGOs, Ministry of Health and, Support groups and other relevant agencies since they have the capacity to enhanced PMTCT of HIV in Nasarawa State, Nigeria.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0194.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: COVID19; Airborne transmission; Droplet transmission; Aerosol transmission; SARS-CoV-2; Heat Inactivation; Infection Prevention; Ventilation system
Online: 9 July 2020 (12:32:42 CEST)
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, has been confirmed in over 10,000,000 individuals worldwide and has resulted in more than 500,000 deaths in a few months since it first surfaced. With such a rapid spread it is no surprise that there has been a massive effort around the world to collectively elucidate the mechanism by which the virus is transmitted. Despite this, there is still no definitive consensus regarding droplet versus airborne transmission of SARS-CoV-2. Public health officials around the world have introduced guidelines within the scope of droplet transmission. However, increasing evidence and comparative analysis with similar coronaviruses, such as severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS-CoV-1) and middle eastern respiratory syndrome (MERS), suggest that airborne transmission of SARS-CoV-2 cannot be effectively ruled out. As the data supporting COVID-19 airborne transmission grows, there needs to be an increased effort in terms of technical and policy measures to mitigate the spread of viral aerosols. These measures can be in the form of broader social distancing and facial covering guidelines, exploration of thermal inactivation in clinical settings, low-dose UV-C light implementation, and greater attention to ventilation and airflow control systems. This review summarizes the current evidence available about airborne transmission of SARS-CoV-2, available literature about airborne transmission of similar viruses, and finally the methods that are already available or can be easily adapted to deal with a virus capable of airborne transmission.
CONCEPT PAPER | doi:10.20944/preprints202203.0404.v2
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Other Keywords: Polypill; Cardiovascular Risk; Primary Prevention; Secondary Prevention; Adherence; Cost-effectivity
Online: 31 October 2022 (09:27:48 CET)
Primary and secondary cardiovascular prevention is less effective than expected due to the concern about polymedication by professionals and the lack of patient adherence to medications prescribed in the medium and long term. Polypills have been presented as a possible solution. A comprehensive bibliographic review is presented about polypills as mechanisms for facilitating adherence and a proposed guide for the use of polypills for the prevention of cardiovascular risk. 41 articles were included, showing options for the polypill as a method of primary and secondary cardiovascular prevention.The polypill increases therapeutic adherence in the medium and long term, also increasing the therapeutic results compared to the administration of the various drugs separately. Based on the evidence, a flow diagram is proposed for the prescription of a polypill.Polypills increase the effectiveness and adherence of patients to primary and secondary cardiovascular prevention programs, without increasing the cost of the intervention. The use of a polypill in cardiovascular prevention can be effective as a prescription tool.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202206.0036.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Other Keywords: Monkeypox; prevention; treatment; endemic; transmission
Online: 2 June 2022 (16:18:05 CEST)
Monkeypox virus was named so because of its detection in monkeys in 1958. It belongs to the same family as smallpox and chickenpox viruses. There had been numerous outbreaks of this malady initially in the African continent and other parts of the world. The simultaneous spread in nineteen countries in 2022 has raised some serious concerns.Monkeypox is no more a rare disease and has the potential for bioweapon use. We discuss the various ways to prevent its spread, treatment options available, diagnosis, and differentiation from other closely related diseases. We also discuss if the present outbreak could be a bioattack or if this disease is here to stay.The literature suggests that we can effectively manage Monkeypox because of the availability of drugs and vaccination against smallpox. There is also a need for active surveillance against the new resistant recombinant viral strains. The possibility of this outbreak being a bioattack seems remote, although there are questions about the transmission which still need to be answered.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201805.0405.v2
Subject: Earth Sciences, Environmental Sciences Keywords: drinking water; lead; Pb; flush; exposure prevention; intervention; lead service line
Online: 29 May 2018 (09:39:42 CEST)
Flushing tap water is often promoted as a simple and low cost approach to reducing water lead exposures. This study evaluated lead reduction when prevailing flush guidelines (30 seconds-2 minutes) are implemented in a city compliant with lead-associated water regulations (New Orleans, LA). Water samples (n=1,497) collected from a convenience sample of 376 residential sites (2015-2017) were analyzed for lead in samples collected: at 1) first draw (n=375), and after incremental flushes of 2) 30-45 seconds (n=375), 3) 2.5-3 minutes (n=373), and 4) 5.5-6 minutes (n=218). There was no significant reduction when compared to the first draw lead level, until the 6 minute flush (p<0.05); but most sites (52%) still had detectable lead (≥1 ppb) after 6 minutes. Older homes (pre-1950) and low occupancy sites had significantly higher WLLs (p<0.05).Each sample type had health-based standard exceedances at over 50% of sites sampled (max: 58 ppb). While flushing is an effective short-term approach to remediate high lead, prevailing flush recommendations are an inconsistently effective exposure prevention measure that can often inadvertently increase exposures. Public health messages should be modified to ensure appropriate application of flushing for specific cities, while acknowledging its short-comings and practical limitations.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201906.0072.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Microeconomics And Decision Sciences Keywords: telematics; motor insurance; speed control; accident prevention
Online: 10 June 2019 (09:08:04 CEST)
We analyze real telematics information for a sample of drivers with usage-based insurance policies. We examine the statistical distribution of distance driven above the posted speed limit – which presents a strong positive asymmetry – using quantile regression models. We find that, at different percentile levels, the distance driven at speeds above the posted limit depends on total distance driven and, more generally, on such factors as the percentages of urban and nighttime driving and on the driver’s gender. However, the impact of these covariates differs according to the percentile level. We stress the importance of understanding telematics information, which should not be limited to simply characterizing average drivers, but can be useful for signaling dangerous driving by predicting quantiles associated with specific driver characteristics. We conclude that the risk of driving long distances above the speed limit is heterogeneous and, moreover, we show that prevention campaigns should target primarily male, non-urban drivers, especially if they present a high percentage of nighttime driving.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints201806.0063.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nutrition Keywords: engagement; adolescents; obesity; diet; prevention; management
Online: 5 June 2018 (11:21:25 CEST)
Obesity is one of the greatest health challenges facing today’s adolescents. Dietary interventions are the foundation of obesity prevention and management. As adolescents are digital frontrunners and early adopters of technology, digital health interventions appear the most practical modality for dietary behaviour change interventions. Despite the rapid growth in digital health interventions, effective engagement with adolescents remains a pertinent issue. Key strategies for effective engagement include co-designing interventions with adolescents, personalisation of interventions, and just-in-time adaptation using data from wearable devices. The aim of this paper is to appraise these strategies, which may be used to improve effective engagement and thereby improve the dietary behaviours of adolescents now and in the future.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202105.0665.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: Sick leave; mental illness; predictors, prevention
Online: 27 May 2021 (11:36:39 CEST)
(1) Background: This study identifies and analyzes those variables that may influence sick leave due to mental illness, based on a retrospective descriptive study of a mutual insurance company in the industrialized region of southern Europe (Catalonia). (2) Methods: All workers who were on sick leave due to mental illness during the period 2009-2019 were included in the study. The relationships between sick leave due to mental illness and social/employment-related and economical and demographic factors were analyzed using multivariate logistic regression and Cox regression model. (3) Results: The period studied included 34,764 workers. Anxious-depressive disorders account for 83.3% of the diagnosed mental disorders. The age cohorts between 30 and 50 years represent 60% of the affected workers. Highest income and high population density regions are the most affected. The levels of mental illness are higher in spring and summer. Professions related to manufacturing industry, automobile mechanics companies, the hospitality industry, education and healthcare and social service companies was more heavily affected. (4) Conclusions: Population density and GDP per capita, the age cohort, the season of the year, the type of payment, the type of contract, and the worker’s business and profession can predict the appearance of sick leave due to mental illness. Mutual insurance companies should plan interventions to minimize these factors and avoid the socioeconomic consequences.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202006.0027.v1
Subject: Engineering, General Engineering Keywords: COVID-19; pandemic; Artificial Intelligence; prevention; testing; treatment
Online: 4 June 2020 (06:30:35 CEST)
Globally, an approximate of 380,000 patients succumbed to death due to the pandemic COVID-19 which also infected more than six million people since December 2019. Not sparing anyone, COVID-19 infections are widely reported among healthcare professionals, sanitation workers and researchers too while global leaders and various governments are providing their best in defending their citizens against this airborne and contact spread virus. In order to contain the virus and protect millions of lives from this deadly coronavirus, there is a need to have a combination of advanced engineering technology and medical facilities. Application of applied science, engineering and technology diffuse almost every aspect of contemporary living. Grasping the fundamentals to determine humanity's most imperative and forthcoming challenges is essential. Artificial Intelligence, the technology that learns, adapts and reciprocates the actions according to the situations, finds optimum position in the fight against corona virus and acts as a powerful tool against this pandemic. In this research article, the authors discusses how Artificial Intelligence (AI) can be leveraged to fight the deadly virus. The research paper further discusses the efficient utilization of AI across the globe to help in testing, treating and serving the population in these hard times. This manuscript focuses on the potential impact of the process in which AI can be implemented to prevent, test and treat.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202005.0410.v1
Online: 25 May 2020 (11:09:25 CEST)
There are many types of coronavirus on the bases of important hosts including human, rat, turkey, rabbit, etc. The virus looks like a crown or corona of the sun with its round projection, spike. Now a day, newly emerged coronavirus disease (COVID 19) was first detected at Wuhan, China in December 2019 and it became a public health emergency international concern. Although a couple of researches has been conducting, much secretes of the virus and disease is still not understood and not reached a common understanding yet. However, sharing basic information is crucial based on the existing published research articles and updated information. Therefore, this review aimed to draw attention to the COVID 19 pandemic facts, opportunities, and challenges based on up to date information on cases in Ethiopia. Accordingly, the coronavirus is a single-stranded, non-segmented RNA genome virus. Two third of the genome (5'end) consists of two genes that code nonstructural proteins and the other 2-7 genes (3' end) code structural proteins including spike, envelope, membrane, and nucleocapsid. The virus transmits from animal to human and suggested as it might be originated from a bat and/or seafood. Coronavirus transmit human to human by direct contact and droplets during coughing and sneezing and common symptoms like fever, dry cough, and tiredness, short breathing, etc. can be seen from the patient. So that stay at home and social distancing are the most practicing pre-prevention methods. The disease causes high economic loss, face to face education closure, community cultural practice, and mass gathering activities are prohibited. However, various charity associations and creativities found increase than before. To this end, peoples should accept and follow governmental advice and instructions to escape from the pandemic.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201704.0156.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: ranolazine; atrial fibrillation; prevention; pharmacological cardioversion; meta-analysis
Online: 25 April 2017 (07:48:26 CEST)
Introduction Recent evidence from relatively small randomized controlled trials would seem to support a useful role of ranolazine for the prevention and treatment of atrial fibrillation (AF). The present study is aimed at providing information about the possible beneficial anti-arrhythmic properties of ranolazine. In particular, the meta-analysis carried out in this study focuses on the application of ranolazine to prophylaxis and treatment of atrial fibrillation.Methods Both randomized controlled trials (RCTs) and non randomized observational studies concerning the effects of ranolazine on AF were included in the meta-analysis. In each of the considered studies, a comparison was made between a group of patients taking ranolazine and a second group treated instead with another antiarrhythmic therapy , or assigned to placebo. Efficacy outcomes were the risk of new- onset AF, the probability of conversion to sinus rhythm of patients with recent occurrence(≤ 48 h)of AF and the time to conversion to sinus rhythm. Safety endpoints were death, adverse events, QTc prolongation and hypotension.Results Ten studies ( 8 RCTs and 2 nonrandomized observational studies) were gathered on the whole. Ranolazine was effective in preventing the occurrence of AF when compared to controls (RR= 0.60; 95% CI: 0.43–0.83; p = 0.002). Subgroup analysis showed a more pronounced preventive effect of ranolazine against AF in the postoperative setting of coronary artery bypass grafting(CABG) surgery (RR= 0.39; 95% CI: 0.18-0.83; p=0.02) when compared to non- postoperative AF (RR= 0.76; 95% CI: 0.63-0.92; p=0.04). Ranolazine enhanced the chances of successful cardioversion when added to intravenous amiodarone compared to amiodarone alone (RR 1.18; 95% CI: 1.05–1.33; p = 0.004) and significantly decreased the time to cardioversion(SMD= −10.35 h; 95% CI: −18.13 hours to − 2.57 hours; p < 0.001). Overall risks of death, adverse events, and QTc prolongation were shown to be similar in the comparison between patients treated with ranolazine and controls. Conclusions Ranolazine given orally at appropriate doses showed the property to significantly quicken the conversion of AF to sinus rhythm when combined with the iv amiodarone, compared to iv amiodarone alone . Furthermore, in patients in sinus rhythm, ranolazine proved to reduce the frequency of new onset AF as well as of its recurrences, especially in patients undergone CABG surgery, known to be at high risk of developing postoperative AF. In addition, ranolazine use seems to be safe and associated with relatively few adverse events.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202111.0362.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Immunology Keywords: Labelling; Food Allergy; Prevention; Proteomics; Mass Spectrometry; Cow’s Milk Allergy
Online: 19 November 2021 (14:44:55 CET)
Extremely sensitive food-allergic patients may react to very small amounts of allergenic foods. Precautionary allergen labelling (PAL) warns from possible allergenic contaminations. We explored the ability of proteomic methods to identify minute amounts of milk/egg allergens in a brand of PAL-labelled milk- and egg-free biscuits. We evaluated the reactivity of children with severe milk and egg allergy, by oral food challenge. Traces of milk and/or egg allergens in biscuits were measured by two different liquid-chromatography-mass spectrometry methods. The binding of patient's serum with egg/milk proteins was assessed at immunoblotting. None of the patients reacted to biscuits. Egg and milk proteins were found under the limit of detection of 0.6 µg/g for milk and egg (method A), and of 0.1 and 0.3 µg /g for milk and egg, respectively (method B). The immunoblots did not show milk/egg proteins in the studied biscuits. Our biscuits did not contain allergens of clinical significance. Their milk/egg content is far lower than 4 µg of milk or egg protein per gram of product, the minimal doses considered theoretically capable of causing reactions. With high sensitivity, proteomic assessments predict the harmlessness of very small amount of allergenic foods and can be used to avoid unnecessary PAL.
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, General Medical Research Keywords: creatine; statin; myopathy; muscle; myalgia; prevention; treatment; pathogenesis; pathophysiology; mitochondria
Online: 11 September 2019 (04:43:37 CEST)
Statins prevent cardiovascular diseases, yet their use is limited by the muscle disturbances they cause. Rarely, statin-induced myopathy is autoimmune, but more commonly it is due to direct muscle toxicity. Available evidence suggests that statin-induced creatine deficiency may be a major cause of this toxicity, and that creatine supplementation prevents it. Statins inhibit guanidinoacetate methyl transferase (GAMT), the last enzyme in the synthesis of creatine, thus they decrease its intracellular content. Such decreased content could cause mitochondrial impairment, since creatine is the final acceptor of the phosphate group of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) at the end of mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation. Decreased cellular synthesis of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) would follow. Accordingly, ATP synthesis is decreased in statin-treated cells. In vitro, creatine supplementation prevents the opening of mitochondrial permeability transition pore caused by statins. Clinically, creatine administration prevents statin myopathy in statin-intolerant patients. Additional research is warranted to hopefully confirm these findings. However, creatine is widely used by athletes with no adverse events, and has demonstrated to be safe even in double-blind, placebo-controlled trials of elder individuals. Thus, it should be trialed, under medical supervision, in patients who cannot assume statin due to the occurrence of muscular symptoms.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0447.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: Injury mechanism; Muscle strengthening; Neuromotor; Neurocognitive; Injury Prevention
Online: 18 December 2020 (08:34:06 CET)
Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) tear is currently a main issue in all of sports communities. Although the number of ACL injuries in football remains low, it’s consequences on both professional and personal lives remain a major concern of rehabilitation. If practitioners often require more time to bring athletes in the best condition, the fact remains that this concept of time before return to sport is nowadays considered as obsolete. Indeed, the better understanding of the mechanisms of lesion and the strains placed on the graft after reconstruction, allow us to establish a personalized program based on clinical criteria and the patient's objectives. The current scientific literature allows us today to optimize the return to play and performance by the use of neuromotor and neurocognitive approaches, muscle strengthening methods and a preventive program necessary to cover the previous level of the players while taking into account physiological and psychological changes due to ACL reconstruction. Indeed, it is important to have a systemic approach centered on the patient, the sports movement, as close as possible to the field in order to find an optimal function of the knee in interaction with its environment.If there is a risk of reinjury of the ACL, it appears important to be able to identify the risk factors so that the player can return to play in optimal conditions.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202010.0150.v1
Subject: Behavioral Sciences, Applied Psychology Keywords: mental health services; climate change; disasters; trauma; prevention treatment
Online: 7 October 2020 (09:22:41 CEST)
This review examines from a services perspective strategies for preparedness and response to mental health impacts of three types of climate-related events: 1) acute climate-related events such as hurricanes, floods and wildfires, 2) sub-acute or long-term changes in the environment such as drought and heat stress; and 3) the existential threat of long-lasting changes, including higher temperatures, rising sea levels and a permanently altered and potentially uninhabitable physical environment. Strategies for acute events include development and implementation of guidelines and interventions for monitoring and treating adverse mental health outcomes and strengthening individual and community resilience, training of non-mental health professionals for services delivery, and the mapping of available resources and locations of at-risk populations. Additional strategies for sub-acute changes include advocacy for mitigation policies and programs and adaptation of guidelines and interventions to address the secondary impacts of sub-acute events such as economic loss, threats to livelihood, health and well-being, population and family displacement, environmental degradation and collective violence. Strategies for long-lasting changes include implementation of evidence-based risk communication interventions that address the existential threat of climate change, promoting the mental health benefits of environmental conservation, and promoting positive mental health impacts of climate change.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202004.0285.v1
Online: 16 April 2020 (16:05:27 CEST)
In December 2019, outbreak of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) occurred in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China and exported across the world leading to thousands of deaths and millions of suspected cases. Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV2) infection into the host undergoes a huge number of complex replicative machineries which still remains unclear. Understanding the mechanism (s) of replication and mode of infection of SARS-CoV2 to human cells will help us in the development of novel vaccines or drugs for the eradication and prevention of the disease. This review compiles the knowledge of SARS-CoV2 replicative machinery, mode of infection to the human cells and the development of drugs and vaccines which are currently under clinical trials.
Subject: Earth Sciences, Atmospheric Science Keywords: COVID 19; pandemic; mining company; epidemic emergency; prevention; good practices
Online: 14 May 2021 (11:52:21 CEST)
The state of epidemic emergency in force in our country since March and the related requirement to implement various sanitary procedures constitute problems for the operation of all companies. However, the unique operation of underground mining companies increases their scale considerably. However, despite initial turbulent moments related to the occurrence of an unknown threat, it was possible to stabilise the situation in all such companies as a result of implementing various anti-threat actions. Following the initial introduction to basic properties of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, the paper presents the results of the study (a case study) on actions taken in individual mining companies. There was an attempt to formulate the so-called good work practices recommended to be applied.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202103.0252.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: prevention; road-traffic-accidents; education-health; schoolchildren; change-attitude
Online: 9 March 2021 (09:54:27 CET)
Introduction: Road traffic accidents are a real pandemic and incur expenses amounting to 1-2% of every country’s GDP. AESLEME (Association for the Study of Spinal Cord Injuries) – devoted to teaching road safety and health to prevent road accidents – has celebrated its 30th anniversary. AESLEME’s instructors are health workers and people with spinal cord injuries caused by road accidents: their presentations – teaching road safety and sharing information on irreversible injuries – are enhanced by personal stories that help schoolchildren to acquire knowledge on this matter. However, until now, we had not assessed how far this acquisition of knowledge had reached. Methods used: Two multiple-choice tests were given to each of the 8,106 students (12-14 years) who took part. Of the four possible answers, only one of them was correct. The first multiple-choice test was taken before the presentation and the second was taken one month later. Results: After assessing the answers, there was a change in the tendency of the number of correct answers before/after answers for the multiple-choice test, and the number of correct one´s rose one month after the presentation. This increase is statistically significant (p<0.01) and represents a national increase of 61% in the number of correct answers, although this varies from 8% to 278% depending on the region. Conclusions: The assessment, involving over 8,000 people, showed that there has been an improvement in road safety knowledge thanks to education provided by AESLEME’s instructors, and a statistically significant increase was obtained throughout Spain, with an average of 61% (confidence level 95: 53% and 64%).
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201808.0514.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: suicide; suicidal behaviour; risk of suicide; suicide prevention; health professionals
Online: 30 August 2018 (05:32:19 CEST)
OBJETIVE: This study analyses the views of four groups of healthcare professionals who may play a role in the management of suicidal behaviour. The goal was to identify key factors for suicide prevention in different areas of the healthcare system. METHODOLOGY: Qualitative research was conducted using focus groups made up of different healthcare professionals who participated in the identification, management and prevention of suicidal behaviour. Professionals included were primary care physicians, psychologists, psychiatrists and emergency physicians. RESULTS: ‘Suicide’ was amongst the most relevant terms that came up in discussions most of the times it appeared associated with words such as ‘risk’, ‘danger’ or ‘harm’. In the analysis by categories, the four groups of professionals agreed that interventions in at-risk behaviours are first in importance. Prevention was the second main concern with greater significance among psychiatrists. DISCUSSION: Primary care professionals claim for more time to address patients at risk for suicide and an easier access to and communication with the mental health network. Emergency care professionals have a lack of awareness of their role in the detection of risk for suicide in patients who seek attention at emergency care facilities for reasons of general somatic issues. Mental health care professionals are in high demand in case of self-harm but they would like to receive specific training in dealing with g suicidal behaviour.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202010.0590.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: burden of cancer mortality; cancer epidemiology; cancer etiology; cancer prevention; carcinogenic infections; modifiable risk factors
Online: 28 October 2020 (12:13:01 CET)
Several infectious agents are ascertained causes of cancer, but the burden of cancer mortality attributable to carcinogenic infections in Italy was still unknown. To tackle this issue, we calculated the rate and regional distribution of cancer deaths due to infections sustained by seven pathogens ranked as group-1 carcinogenic agents in humans by IARC. Population attributable fractions related to these agents were applied to annual statistics of cancer deaths coded according to 10th International Classification of Diseases. The estimated burden of cancer mortality attributable to carcinogenic infections in Italy during the period 2011-2015 was on average 8.7% of all cancer deaths registered yearly. Approximately 60% of deaths occurred in men and almost the whole burden was due to four infectious agents (Helicobacter pylori, HCV, HPV, and HBV). The analysis of regional distribution showed a higher number of infection-related cancer deaths in the northern regions, where the estimates reached 30 (Liguria) and 28 (Friuli Venezia Giulia) deaths per 100,000 inhabitants in 2015. Since one-twelfth of cancer deaths were attributable to these modifiable risk factors, the implementation of appropriate prevention and treatment interventions may help to reduce the impact of these infections on cancer mortality.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0706.v1
Online: 30 July 2020 (07:44:16 CEST)
Kinesio tape is considered one of the most common techniques which using recently, where it is used as a therapeutic technique for pain relief, correction of joint position, prevention of oedema and injuries, improve range of motion and muscular activity for the individual. This study is a descriptive research design and aims to identify the effect of using Kinesio tape on the neuromuscular activity of quadriceps muscle after the rehabilitation program of the knee joint. The study sample consists of (10) players from different sports (football, basketball …etc.) and suffering from knee joint injuries. This sample was taken from Kafr-El sheikh and Kaleen club. Results showed that Kinesio tape doesn’t have any explicit effect on the neuromuscular activity of muscle but acts as a catalyst for muscle and promote a person’s feeling of psychological wellbeing and reassurance.When comparing results of using Kinesio tape during performing leg squatting and balance test with not using tape, founded that when performing leg squatting and balance test with using Kinesio tape, there were significant effects on muscle activity compared to not using it.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202209.0278.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: Suicide attempt; behaviour; prevention; Facebook
Online: 19 September 2022 (10:33:36 CEST)
Background: Facebook represents a new dimension for global information sharing. Suicidal behaviours and attempts are growingly reported on Facebook. This scoping review explores the various aspects of suicidal behaviours associated with Facebook, discussing the challenges and preventive measures. Methods: PubMed, Google Scholar, and Scopus were searched for related articles published in English up to October 2021, using different combinations of "Facebook" and "suicide". A group of consultant psychiatrists screened the records and read the full-text articles to extract relevant data. Results: Facebook impacts suicidal behaviours in different aspects. Announcing suicides through sharing notes or personal information, which can be helpful in prediction of suicide, and harmful since negatively affects audience. Live-streaming videos of suicide is another aspect, which questions the ability of Facebook to monitor shared contents that can negatively affect the audience. Helping bereaved families to share feelings and seek support online, commemorating the lost person by sharing their photos is another positive impact. Moreover, it can provide real-world details of everyday user behaviours, which are helpful to predict suicide risk, primarily through novel machine-learning techniques, and provide early warning and valuable help to prevent it. It can also provide a timeline of the user's activities and state of mind before suicide. Conclusions: Social media can detect suicidal tendencies, provide support for those seeking help, comfort family and friends with their grief, and provide insights via timelining the users' activities leading to their suicide. The lack of quantitative studies on evaluating preventative efforts on Facebook was one of the limitations. The creators' commitment and the users' social responsibility will be required to create a mentally healthy Facebook environment.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints201809.0602.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Obstetrics & Gynaecology Keywords: population testing; genetic testing; BRCA; Jewish; general population; cancer prevention; primary prevention
Online: 30 September 2018 (06:30:36 CEST)
The current clinical model for genetic-testing is based on clinical-criteria/family-history(FH) and a pre-defined mutation probability threshold. It requires people to develop cancer before identifying unaffected individuals in the family to target prevention. This process is inefficient, resource intense and misses >50% of individuals/mutation carriers at risk. Population genetic-testing can overcome these limitations. It is technically feasible to test populations on a large scale; genetic-testing costs are falling and the acceptability/awareness is rising. MEDLINE/EMBASE/Pubmed/CINAHL/PsychINFO databases were searched using a free-text and MeSH terms; reference lists of publications retrieved screened; additionally web-based platforms, Google, and clinical-trial registries were searched. Quality of studies were evaluated using appropriate check-lists. A number of studies have evaluated population-based BRCA-testing in the Jewish-population. This has been found to be acceptable, feasible, clinically-effective, safe, associated with high satisfaction rates and extremely cost-effective. Data support change in guidelines to population-based BRCA-testing in the Jewish-population. Population panel-testing for BRCA1/BRCA2/RAD51C/RAD51D/BRIP1/PALB2 gene mutations is the most cost-effective genetic-testing strategy in general-population women and can prevent thousands more breast/ovarian cancers than current clinical-criteria based approaches. A few ongoing studies are evaluating population-based genetic-testing for multiple cancer susceptibility genes in the general-population but more implementation studies are needed. A future population-testing programme could also target other chronic diseases.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201904.0297.v1
Subject: Chemistry, Other Keywords: hyperbranched polyester; functional polymer; chemical evolution; wet-dry cycle; gelation prevention; condensation polymer; origin of life
Online: 26 April 2019 (10:46:40 CEST)
In extant biology, biopolymers perform multiple crucial functions. The biopolymers are synthesized by enzyme-controlled biosystems that would not have been available at the earliest stages of chemical evolution and consist of correctly sequenced and/or linked monomers. Some of the abiotic “messy” polymers approximate some functions of biopolymers. Condensation polymers are an attractive search target for abiotic functional polymers since principal polymers of life are produced by condensation and since condensation allows for the accurate construction of high polymers. Herein the formation of hyperbranched polyesters that have been previously used in the construction of enzyme-like catalytic complexes is explored. The experimental setup compares between the branched polyesters prepared under mild continuous heating and the wet-dry cycle conditions. The results reveal that period wetting during which partial hydrolysis of the polyester occurs, helps control the chain growth and retards the gel transition. It is significant to the origin of life studies that environmental, prebiotically plausible conditions could achieve such control without enzymes or a skilled chemist. As expected in marginally controlled systems, the identification of each component of the heterogeneous system has proved challenging, but it is not crucial for drawing the conclusions.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202002.0159.v1
Online: 12 February 2020 (12:26:51 CET)
The primary purpose of this investigation was to identify safety-oriented bicycling practices commonly used by adult riders in an urban setting (Brooklyn, New York), and to explore whether there are any differences between the safety-oriented practices of men and women riders. Methods: 24 adult riders (14 men, 10 women) in Brooklyn were interviewed concerning their perceptions of bicycling hazards and their safety-oriented practices. Interviews were recorded, transcribed, and analyzed through thematic analysis. Fisher’s Exact Test was employed to test for gender differences. Results: Participants identified a variety of hazards, mainly due to motor vehicles but also pedestrians and roadway conditions. The analysis distilled twenty-one bicycling practices to summarize prevalent views of the participants about safe riding practices. Related items were grouped under broader categories, generating seven safety-oriented bicycling strategies. Few differences based on gender were found in the analysis; however, women in this study were more likely than men to say that they felt disrespected by other road users. Conclusion: Seven strategies may be important for safe urban bicycling: minimizing exposure to other road users (especially motor vehicles) while riding, being vigilant and anticipating what others might do, riding in a predictable fashion, making one’s presence known to other road users, making sure it is safe before proceeding, obeying traffic rules, and riding at a safe speed. Future studies could develop these concepts further and test whether they are associated with involvement in traffic crashes.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202009.0497.v1
Online: 21 September 2020 (07:20:59 CEST)
To evaluate the efficacy of fish oil for protection against coronary heart disease (CHD), we conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) evaluating the use of fish oil for protection against CHD. We retrieved relevant articles published from January 1966 to January 2020 by searching the PubMed, EMBASE, Cochrane CENTRAL, and Web of Science databases. RCTs of fish oil in preventing CHD were selected. The study quality was evaluated using the Cochrane Risk of Bias tool with RevMan 5.3 software. The first selection involved 350 citations. After screening and evaluation of suitability, 19 RCTs adjusted for clustering were included in the meta-analysis. All selected manuscripts considered that fish oil was effective in preventing CHD, secondary outcome measures included angina, sepsis and death. Compared with the control group, fish oil may confer significant protection against CHD (odds ratio = 0.84; 95% confidence interval: 0.72–0.98). There was no significant difference in the incidence of secondary outcomes between the observation group and the control group (P > 0.05). The above results show that fish oil plays an important role in reducing CHD and cardiovascular events. However, because of the suboptimal quality of the studies included into the meta-analysis, these results do not justify adding fish oils systematically to the heavy pharmaceutical assortment already recommended in CHD patients.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202105.0547.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: General Practitioner; Prevention; Suicide; Qualitative study
Online: 24 May 2021 (09:23:49 CEST)
Background: General Practitioners (GP) have an important role in the prevention of suicidal behavior. The purpose of this study was to explore their views and experiences of identifying and assessing suicidal ideation. Methods: Ten GPs were recruited through convenience sampling, based on accessibility, interest and willingness to participate. In-depth interviews were carried out and results transcribed ver-batim. Aspects of experiences with suicidal patients emerged through the thematic analyses process. Results: The GPs described the varied clinical picture when patients presented in their office. How they identified depressive symptoms apart from originally somatic complaints, formed a trusting relationship and addressed suicide ideation. They described customized interventions as well as obstacles and factors that facilitated communication: time, own personal traits, pa-tient’s disclosure and organizational barriers. Conclusions: The levels of the suicidal process among patients in general practice vary greatly. GPs adjust their appraisals to profundity understand and intervene in order to prevent a crisis to escalate into subsequent suicidal behavior.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202103.0006.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: Diverticulitis; Hemorrhoids; Vegetables; Prevention; Epidemiology; Consumption
Online: 1 March 2021 (13:02:53 CET)
Background The high incidence of diverticulitis and hemorrhoidal proctitis episodes in the population imposes an important healthcare and economic burden. Aim To determine the association between intake of certain plant foods and diverticulitis and hemorrhoidal proctitis episodes. Methods Case-control study with quantitative food frequency questionnaire focusing on selected plant foods and derived products. These were grouped by main chemical components into: ethanol, caffeine/theine/theobromine, capsaicin, alliin, acids, eugenol, and miscellaneous foods like curcumin. We quantified intake according to 24-h recall, either on a 1-4 scale (no intake, low, moderate, high intake) or as the number of units consumed (e.g. cups of tea/coffee, n of oranges or lemons); this value was multiplied by the number of reported intake days per week (1-7). Overall intake was expressed as a continuous variable obtained by successively multiplying the score for each food category, and the result was transformed into a common logarithm (range 0.3 to 27.7). Cases and controls were compared using the chi-squared test, student’s t test, odds ratio (OR) and 95% confidence interval (CI), and predictive analysis (multiple logistic regression). Results The sample included 410 cases and 401 controls, who were similar in mean age and gender distribution. The mean score for overall intake of included plant foods was 6.3 points (standard deviation [SD] 4.5), and this was significantly higher in cases (8.5 points, SD 5.3) than in controls (4.1 points, SD 1.2; p < 0.001). Overall intake was similar in cases presenting diverticulitis or hemorrhoidal proctitis. Cases had 13 times the odds of being in the upper quartile for overall intake (> 7 points) compared to controls (OR 13.2, 95% CI 8.3 to 20.8, p < 0.001). Predictive logistic regression models showed that the chemical food group most closely associated with diverticulitis and hemorrhoidal proctitis was capsaicin, followed by ethanol, eugenol, caffeine/theine/theobromine, and acids. The OR for age was near the null value. Neither alliin nor miscellaneous food groups showed any association. Conclusions High, frequent consumption of some plant foods and derived products increases the risk of presenting symptoms of diverticulitis and hemorrhoidal proctitis.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202103.0351.v1
Subject: Behavioral Sciences, Applied Psychology Keywords: family-school; home-school; parent engagement; family engagement; parent involvement; recruitment; prevention; intervention; mental health; partnership
Online: 12 March 2021 (20:10:14 CET)
Parent education programs, offered via family-school partnerships, offer an effective means for promoting the mental health and educational functioning of children and adolescents at a whole-of-school level. However, these programs often have low uptake. This study aimed to identify strategies for increasing the uptake of parent education programs within preschool and school settings. A three-round Delphi procedure was employed to obtain expert consensus on strategies that are important and feasible in educational settings. First, thirty experts rated statements identified from the literature and a stakeholder forum. Next, experts re-appraised statements, including new statements generated from the first round. Ninety statements were endorsed by ≥ 80% of the experts. Primary themes include strategies for program selection, strategies for increasing the accessibility of programs and the understanding of educational staff on parent engagement and child mental health, strategies for program development, promotion, and delivery, as well as strategies for increasing parent and community engagement. This study offers a set of consensus strategies for improving the uptake of parent education programs within family-school partnership.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201707.0080.v2
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nursing & Health Studies Keywords: implementation; adoption; health interventions; community prevention; obesity prevention interventions; system dynamics; systems thinking; endogenous dynamics; qualitative modeling; case studies
Online: 27 July 2017 (17:54:29 CEST)
In this study, we present case studies to explore the dynamics of implementation and maintenance of health interventions. We analyze how specific interventions are built and eroded, how the building and erosion mechanisms are interconnected, and why we can see significantly different erosion rates across otherwise similar organizations. We use multiple comparative obesity prevention case studies to provide empirical information on the mechanisms of interest, and use qualitative systems modeling to integrate our evolving understanding into an internally consistent and transparent theory of the phenomenon. Our preliminary results identify reinforcing feedback mechanisms, including design of organizational processes, motivation of stakeholders, and communication among stakeholders, which influence implementation and maintenance of intervention components. Over time, these feedback mechanisms may drive a wedge between otherwise similar organizations, leading to distinct configurations of implementation and maintenance processes.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202108.0208.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nutrition Keywords: lifestyle; esophageal cancer; cancer prevention; esophageal adenocarcinoma
Online: 9 August 2021 (18:05:44 CEST)
One of the most notable changes in the Esophageal Cancer (EC) epidemiology is the rising incidence and prevalence of esophageal adenocarcinoma (EAC) in developed countries, likely due to lifestyle and/or environmental factors that may play an important role in EAC onset. The aim of this systematic review was to collect and summarize all the available evidence regarding lifestyle, diet and EAC risk. We searched the PubMed and Scopus databases in January 2021 for studies providing information about lifestyle, diet, WCRF/AICR recommendations and EAC risk. A total of 106 publications met the inclusion criteria. Body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference (WC) are associated with increased EAC risk. Physical activity does not appear to have a significant direct role in EAC risk. A diet rich in fruit, vegetables, and whole grains appeared to be more protective than a diet rich in animal fat, red meat, and processed meat. Alcohol does not seem to be related to EAC whereas smokers, particularly heavy smokers, have an increased risk of EAC. Primary prevention remains the best option to avert EAC. BMI and WC, along with low consumption of red and processed meat, high consumption of plant food, and the avoidance of smoking are pivotal for EAC prevention.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202204.0146.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Dentistry Keywords: Essential medicines; affordability; NCD prevention; oral healthcare; access
Online: 15 April 2022 (10:46:26 CEST)
Background: Fluoride toothpaste (FT) has recently been included in the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Model List of Essential Medicines. Whereas it is essential for preventing dental caries, its current affordability around the globe remains unclear. This study aimed to analyse the affordability of FT in as many as possible countries worldwide. Methods: A standardized protocol was developed to collect country-specific information about the characteristics of the cheapest FT at a common point of purchase. 82 members of the WHO Global Oral Health Network of Chief Dental Officers (CDOs), directors of WHO Collaborative Centres and other oral health experts collected data using mobile phone technology. The Fluoride Toothpaste Affordability Ratio (FTAR) was calculated as the price associated with the recommended annual consumption of FT, relative to the daily wage of the lowest-paid unskilled government worker (FTAR >1 = unaffordable spending on fluoride toothpaste). The daily expenditure per capita of the poorest 15% of the income distrubition was used as the main proxy of the daily wage, using World Bank data. Alternatively, we used the daily minimum wage as a proxy of the daily wage. Stratified descriptive statistics were undertaken with respect to different World Bank Income Groups and WHO Regions. Results: There are significant discrepancies in the affordability of FT across 78 countries. FT was strongly affordable in high-income countries, relatively affordable in upper middle-income countries, and strongly unaffordable in lower middle-income and low-income countries. The affordability of FT across WHO Regions was dependent upon the economic mix of WHO Regions’ member states. Conclusion: FT is still unaffordable for many people, particularly in low-resource settings. Health policy members should develop better strategies to address and improve the universal affordability of FTs, for the incidence of dental caries to be reduced at a global level.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202205.0300.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Education Studies Keywords: nursing home; advanced fire prevention; emergency response training
Online: 23 May 2022 (10:43:18 CEST)
Background: In long-term care facilities, there are many residents who do not have the ability to seek shelter by themselves in the case of an emergency. Thus, it is extremely important that the staff of nursing homes are equipped with correct disaster prevention concepts, emergency survival responses, and hazard mitigation measures. Purpose: Discuss the intervention effectiveness of different fire prevention and emergency response trainings at nursing homes and the relationship and predictivity of awareness to self-efficacy. Method: Recruit staff from two nursing homes through purposive sampling, using a two-team pre-and post-test design to collect results from 41 individuals in the experiment group and 40 individuals in the control group. The research tool is the “Nursing Home Fire Prevention and Emergency Response Awareness and Self-Efficacy Scale,” to compare the effectiveness of advanced and general fire safety trainings. Result: After receiving improved advanced fire safety training, the total score and the result of the experiment group on fire prevention and emergency response awareness and self-efficacy had both performed better than the control group who received general fire safety training (p < .001); fire prevention and emergency response awareness has significant and positive correlation with self-efficacy (r=.601, p < .001), and awareness is a significant predictor variable to self-efficacy (p < .001). Conclusion/Practical Application: This study finds that the key to improving learning effectiveness includes adding fire science concept chapter when creating fire safety training material in order to strengthen basic awareness; fire safety training should comprehensively introduce all related duty responsibilities of staff fire defense formation, in turn enabling mutual responsive support for the needs of the site; also, to become familiarized with the knowledge requires appropriate frequency of training and enhancing the staff’s awareness to fire prevention and emergency response, which is the most important key of learning effectiveness.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202205.0271.v1
Online: 20 May 2022 (09:11:25 CEST)
PrEP uptake in the Netherlands is growing but remains at suboptimal levels. Hence, the analysis of hurdles is paramount. Given the initial focus of PrEP provision among men-who-have-sex-with-men (MSM) via a demonstration project that was launched in June 2015, AmPrEP in Amsterdam, and pharmacies in the main urban areas (so called “Randstad”, entailing Amsterdam, Utrecht, Leiden, The Hague and Rotterdam), investigating regional differences is necessary. This study seeks to unravel regional differences jointly with psycho-social determinants of PrEP uptake. This cross-sectional study included 3,232 HIV-negative Dutch MSM recruited via the EMIS survey in late 2017. Prevalence and standardized prevalence ratio (SPR) of PrEP awareness, intention and uptake were measured on a regional level (Randstad vs. the rest of the country). Multilevel logistic modelling was conducted to identify the association of PrEP uptake with PrEP awareness and intention, sociodemographic, psycho-social determinants, and random effects from regional differences. MSM from the Randstad used more PrEP (SPR=1.4 vs. 0.7) compared to the rest of the country, but there were minor differences for awareness and intention. The regional distinction was estimated to explain 4.6% of the PrEP use variance. We observed a greater influence from PrEP intention (OR=4.5, 95%CI 2.0-10.1), while there was limited influence from the awareness of PrEP (OR=0.4, 95%CI 0.04-4.4). Lower education (OR=0.4, 95%CI 0.2-0.9) was negatively associated with PrEP uptake, however, no significant difference was found between middle and high education (OR=1.2, 95%CI 0.7-2.0). We showed that regional differences – MSM in non-urban regions – and other psycho-social determinants account for lower PrEP uptake. Based on these findings, more fine-tuned PrEP access with a focus on non-urban regions can be implemented, and tailored campaigns increasing intention/use can be conducted among target populations.
BRIEF REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202211.0469.v1
Subject: Behavioral Sciences, Other Keywords: diabetes knowledge; diabetes; prediabetes; prevention; health promotion; awareness
Online: 25 November 2022 (06:02:45 CET)
We aimed to study the knowledge of diabetes among high-risk individuals for diabetes in the Indian state of Kerala. The baseline data collected from 1007 participants of the Kerala Diabetes Prevention Program were analyzed. Diabetes knowledge was assessed using a scale adapted from a large nationwide study conducted in India. The composite score of the scale ranges from 0 to 8. The mean age of participants was 46.0 (SD: 7.5) years, and 47.2% were female. The mean diabetes knowledge score was 6.9 (SD: 2.1), with 59.5% having the maximum possible score of 8. Of 1007 participants, 968 (96.1%) had heard the term diabetes, and of them, 84.7% know what diabetes is, 87.2% think more and more people are getting diabetes nowadays, 79.6% know that diabetes can cause complications in organs, and 75.9% know that diabetes can be prevented. While the level of diabetes knowledge was high among our participants, a quarter of them (24.1%) were not aware that diabetes can be prevented. Thus, there is a need for health promotion programs to increase the knowledge of diabetes prevention among high-risk individuals in Kerala.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202112.0257.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Pediatrics Keywords: Multi-allergen; early introduction; food allergy; efficacy; safety; prevention
Online: 15 December 2021 (15:02:28 CET)
The incidence and prevalence of food allergy (FA) are increasing. While several studies have established the safety and efficacy of early introduction of single allergens in infants for the prevention of FA, the exact dose, frequency, and number of allergens that can be safely introduced to infants particularly in those at high or low risk of atopy are still unclear. This 1-year study evaluated the safety of early introduction of single foods (milk, egg, or peanut), vs. two foods (milk/egg, egg/peanut, milk/peanut), vs. multiple foods (milk/egg/peanut/cashew/almond/shrimp/walnut/wheat/fish/soy at low, medium, or high doses) vs no early introduction in infants between 4-6 months of age. At the end of the study, they were evaluated for plasma biomarkers associated with food reactivity with standardized blood tests. Two to four years after the start of the study, participants were evaluated by standardized food challenges. The serving sizes for the single, double, and low dose mixtures were 300 mg total protein per day. The serving sizes for the medium and high dose mixture was 900 mg and 3000 mg total protein, respectively. Equal parts of each protein were used for double or mixture foods. All infants were breastfed until at least 6 months of age. Results demonstrate that infants at either high or low risk for atopy were able to tolerate early introduction of multiple allergenic foods with no increases in any safety issues, including eczema, FA, or food protein induced enterocolitis. The mixtures of foods at either low, medium, or high doses demonstrated trends for improvement in food challenge reactivity and plasma biomarkers compared to single and double food introductions. The results of this study suggest that early introduction of foods, particularly simultaneous mixtures of many allergenic foods is efficacious for preventing FA and can occur safely.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202112.0312.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nursing & Health Studies Keywords: Health cadres; knowledge; motivation; stunting children; stunting prevention
Online: 20 December 2021 (12:40:36 CET)
Stunting in children is a serious problem of nutritional disorders and is strictly monitored by the Indonesian government, it is not only cause physical but also cognitive abnormalities in the form of less intelligence in children so that when they grow up, their productivity will decrease. The incidence of stunting in 2018 in Indonesia was 30.8 %, while in West Java was 29.92%, still at a moderate to high level, consequently, prevention and early detection efforts need to be carried out by various parties, including health professionals and health cadres. Therefore, the aim of this study was to examine the association between the socio demographic characteristics factors as well as the knowledge and motivation of health cadres in the stunting prevention in West Java. A correlational study with a cross-sectional approach was employed with the samples of health cadres from 8 districts/cities in West Java Province: Karawang, Tasikmalaya, Garut, Bandung, Subang, Sukabumi, Cianjur, and West Bandung. A total of 363 health cadres participated and the sampling technique used is the stratified method. The data were collected using a questionnaire developed specifically for this study and were analyzed using a correlation with Chi-Square test and presented in the form of a frequency distribution. The study findings found that majority of the health cadres have good knowledge of 81.27%, which was significantly influenced by education level and marital status with p <0.05. Meanwhile, approximately half of the respondents had moderate motivation with 47.66%, while one-third or 39.12% had high motivation. This motivation was significantly influenced by education level, marital status, and age with p <0.05. It was concluded that health cadres need to further enhance the roles and functions in the prevention and early detection of stunting in West Java by providing continuous guidance, stunting training prevention and award presentations.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202008.0299.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nutrition Keywords: Obesity; Eating Disorders; Adolescents; Prevention programs; Systematic Review
Online: 13 August 2020 (10:38:34 CEST)
An effective behavior changes program is the first-line of prevention for youth obesity. However, effectiveness in prevention of adolescent obesity requires several approaches, with special attention paid to disordered eating behaviors and psychological support among other environmental factors. The aim of this systematic review was to compare the impact of two types of obesity prevention programs, inclusive of behavior change components on weight outcomes. Energy-balance studies were aimed at reducing calories from high-energy sources and increasing PA levels, while “shared risk factors for obesity and eating disorders” focused on reducing disordered eating behaviors to promote a positive relationship with food and eating. A systematic search of ProQuest, PubMed, PsycInfo, SciELO, and Web of Science identified 8825 articles. Twenty were considered “energy-balance” and fifteen “shared-risk factors for obesity and eating disorders”. Overall, energy-balance studies were unable to support a maintenance weight status, diet, and PA over time. Shared risk factors programs also did not result in significant differences in weight status over time. However, the majority of shared risk factors studies demonstrated reduced body dissatisfaction, dieting, and weight-control behaviors. More research is needed to examine how a shared risk factor approach can address both obesity and eating disorder.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints201911.0325.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Dentistry Keywords: dental caries; prevention; clinical trials; herbal; scoping review
Online: 27 November 2019 (03:57:04 CET)
It is currently recognized that an injudicious strategy in the last decades has been not only focusing of research typically on caries in children, but also the narrow focusing on fluoride, because despite sufficient availability of fluoride in water and oral healthcare products, caries levels escalate steadily as people get older and caries remain a main public health issue to be settled. In the last two decades the scientific community intensified efforts of exploring other products for caries prevention, herbal products being one of these approaches. Because preliminary evidence indicated that clinical trials for caries prevention with herbal products are heterogeneous in design, quality and products evaluated, we performed a scoping review intended to explore the main characteristics of such clinical trials. From an initial collection of 1986 unique papers from different literature databases, 56 articles satisfied the inclusion and exclusion criteria. The species investigated, dosage forms, study designs, duration of intervention, controls, endpoints, quality of reporting and risk of bias are discussed. 85.71% of the trials reviewed here reported positive results but given the methodological flaws and biases affecting them, it is difficult to conclude on the efficacy of those products based on the studies published thus far.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201801.0142.v2
Online: 8 February 2018 (15:21:11 CET)
Since the water-borne iodine excessive goiter was firstly found and reported in 19 in Hebei Province, it was confirmed successively. The national water-borne investigation carried out in 2005 demarcated the water-borne iodine excess areas and water-borne iodine excess endemial areas. The high iodine water well was found In 129 counties of 11 provinces, about 30.98 million people of threatened population lived in water-borne iodine excess areas and water borne iodine excess endemial areas. In these areas, the measures of prevention and control was effectively implemented. In 2016, the new standard of iodine excess area was issued, the iodine excess areas redrawed, and in these areas, non-iodized salt should be supplied and the drinking water should be gradually improved of water, and to control the damage of water-borne iodine excess at an early date
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: Behaviours; Childhood; Infant feeding; Interventions; Obesity; Prevention; Physical activity.
Online: 8 January 2021 (14:35:46 CET)
Childhood overweight and obesity is a worldwide public health issue. Our objective was to describe planned, ongoing and completed randomized controlled trials (RCTs) designed for the prevention of obesity in early childhood. Two databases (World Health Organization International Clinical Trials Registry Platform, ClinicalTrials.gov) were searched to identify RCTs with the primary aim of preventing childhood obesity and at least one outcome related to child weight. Interventions needed to start in the first two years of childhood or earlier, continue for at least 6 months postnatally, include a component related to lifestyle or behaviors, and have a follow up time of at least 2 years. We identified 29 unique RCTs, implemented since 2008, with most being undertaken in high income countries. Interventions ranged from advice on diet, activity, sleep, emotion regulation and parenting education through individual home visits, clinic-based consultations or group education sessions. Eleven trials have published data on child weight related outcomes to date, though most were not sufficiently powered to detect significant effects. Many trials detected improvements in practices such as breastfeeding, screen time and physical activity in the intervention groups compared to the control groups. Further follow-up of ongoing trials is needed to assess longer-term effects.
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nursing & Health Studies Keywords: 2019-nCoV; epidemiology; causes; prevention and control; review
Online: 6 February 2020 (08:54:11 CET)
The 2019-nCoV has been identified as the cause of an outbreak of respiratory illness in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China beginning in December 2019. This epidemic had spread to 19 countries with 11,791 confirmed cases, including 213 deaths, as of January 31, 2020. The World Health Organization declared it as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. This study analyzed and discussed 70 research articles published until January 31, 2020 for a better understanding of the epidemiology, causes, clinical diagnosis, prevention and control of this virus. Studies thus far have shown origination in connection to a seafood market in Wuhan, but specific animal association has not been confirmed. The reported symptoms include fever, cough, fatigue, pneumonia, headache, diarrhea, hemoptysis, and dyspnea. Preventive measures such as masks, hand hygiene practices, avoidance of public contact, case detection, contact tracing, and quarantines are effective for reducing the transmission. To date, no specific antiviral treatment is proven effective, hence, infected people primarily rely on symptomatic treatment and supportive care. Although these studies had relevance to control a public emergency, more research need to be conducted to provide valid and reliable ways to manage this kind of public health emergency in both short- and long- term.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202108.0365.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Veterinary Medicine Keywords: Dirofilaria immitis; macrocyclic lactones; resistance; diagnosis; treatment; prevention
Online: 17 August 2021 (14:13:15 CEST)
Dirofilaria immitis infection is one of the most severe parasitic diseases of dogs. Prevention is achieved by the administration of drugs containing macrocyclic lactones (MLs). These products are very safe and highly effective, targeting the third and fourth larval stages (L3, L4) of the parasite. Until 2011, claims of ineffectiveness of MLs, reported as “Lack of Efficacy” (LOE), were generally attributed to owners’ non-compliance, or other reason for inadequate preventative coverage. There was solid argumentation that a resistance problem is not likely to occur because of i) the great extent of refugia, ii) the complexity of resistance development to MLs, and iii) the possible big number of genes involved in resistance selection. Nevertheless, today it is unequivocally proven that ML resistant D. immitis strains exist, at least in the Lower Mississippi region, USA. Accordingly, tools have been developed, to evaluate and confirm the susceptibility status of D. immitis strains. A simple, in-clinic, microfilariae suppression test, 14-28 days after ML administration, and a “decision tree” (algorithm), including compliance and preventatives’ purchase history, and testing gaps, may be applied for assessing any resistant nature of the parasite. On the molecular level, specific SNPs may be used as markers of ML resistance, offering a basis for validation of clinically suspected resistant strains. In Europe, no LOE/resistance claims have been reported so far, and the existing conditions (stray dogs, rich wildlife, majority of owned dogs not on preventive MLs treatment) do not favor selection pressure on the parasites. Considering the genetic basis of resistance and the epizootiological characteristics of D. immitis, ML resistance neither establishes easily nor spreads quickly, a fact confirmed by the current known dispersion of the problem, which is limited. Nevertheless, ML resistance may propagate from an initial geographical point, via animal and vector mobility, to other regions, while it can also emerge as an independent evolutionary process in a new area. For these reasons and considering the current chemoprophylaxis recommendations and increasing use of ML endectoparasiticides as a potential selection pressure, it is important to remain vigilant for timely detection of any ML LOE/resistance, in all continents where D. immitis is enzootic.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202107.0666.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Atmospheric Science Keywords: hail prevention; non-normal distributions; permutation; bootstrap; confidence intervals
Online: 29 July 2021 (14:21:23 CEST)
Grossversuch IV is a large and well documented experiment on hail suppression by silver iodide seeding. The original 1986 evaluation remained vague, although indicating a tendency to increase hail when seeding. The strategy to deal with distributions of hail energy far from normal was not optimal. The present re-evaluation sticks to the question asked and avoids both misleading transformations and unsatisfactory meteorological predictors. The raw data show an increase by about a factor of 3 for the hail energy when seeding. This is the opposite of what seeding is supposed to do. The probability to obtain such a result by chance is below 1%, calculated by permutation and bootstrap techniques applied on the raw data. Confidence intervals were approximated by bootstrapping as well as by a new method called "correlation imposed permutation" (CIP).
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202202.0184.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nutrition Keywords: type 2 diabetes; lifestyle behaviors; healthcare provider advice; provider-patient interactions; health care setting; brief lifestyle intervention exposure; diabetes prevention; diabetes management
Online: 15 February 2022 (09:20:36 CET)
Growing evidence suggests that healthcare provider advice may increase tobacco cessation, reduce alcohol use, and improve the adoption of desirable lifestyle behaviors among patients. However, how brief interventions and other provider-patient interactions can shape cumulative adoption of multiple modifiable behaviors is less well studied for diabetes prevention and control. Using weighted internet panel survey data from a large socio-demographically diverse urban population in the United States (n=1,003), the present study describes differences in group characteristics among those who had been “ever diagnosed” with prediabetes/diabetes versus those who had not. It also examines the associations between the cumulative adoption of lifestyle behaviors and each of the following: a) lifetime prediabetes/diabetes diagnosis; b) brief lifestyle intervention exposure (i.e., received provider advice/encouragement); and c) recent provider-patient communication about diabetes. There were several group differences in “ever diagnosed” prediabetes/diabetes status by age, employment status, health status, nutrition knowledge, blood pressure/hypertension diagnosis, and diabetes-related health behaviors (p<0.05). Each of the three provider-patient interactions of interest were positively associated with a higher cumulative sum of adopted modifiable lifestyle behaviors for diabetes prevention and management. Results suggest that provider advice/provider-patient interactions of any type can have a salutary impact on whether individuals with prediabetes or type 2 diabetes will engage in recommended lifestyle behavior modifications.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202108.0528.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nutrition Keywords: Intermittent fasting; cognition; brain-related diseases; prevention and progress
Online: 27 August 2021 (16:22:57 CEST)
The importance of diet and the gut-brain axis for brain health and cognitive function is increasingly acknowledged. Dietary interventions are tested for their potential to prevent and/or treat brain disorders. Intermittent fasting (IF), the abstinence or strong limitation of calories for 12 to 48 hours, alternated with periods of regular food intake, has shown promising results on neurobiological health in animal models. In this review article, we discuss the potential benefits of IF on cognitive function and the possible effects on the prevention and progress of brain-related disorders in animals and humans. We do so by summarizing the effects of IF which - through metabolic, cellular and circadian mechanisms - lead to anatomical and functional changes in the brain. Our review shows that there is no clear evidence of a positive short-term effect of IF on cognition in healthy subjects. Clinical studies show benefits of IF for epilepsy, Alzheimer’s disease and multiple sclerosis on disease symptoms and progress. Findings from animal studies show mechanisms by which Parkinson’s disease, ischaemic stroke, autism spectrum disorder and mood- and anxiety disorders could benefit from IF. Future research should disentangle whether positive effects of IF hold true regardless of age or the presence of obesity. Also, variations in fasting patterns, total caloric intake and intake of specific nutrients may be relevant components of IF success. Longitudinal studies and Randomized Clinical Trials (RCTs) will provide a window into the long-term effects of IF on the development and progress of brain-related diseases.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202103.0635.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: health literacy; healthcare; disease prevention; health promotion.
Online: 25 March 2021 (15:24:34 CET)
Health literacy is an indicator of a society’s ability to make better health judgement for themselves and the people around them. This study investigates the prevalence of health literacy among Malaysian adults and provides an overall picture of the current health literacy state of the society. The study also highlights socio-demographics markers of communities with limited health literacy which may warrant future intervention. A population based self-administered survey using the Health Literacy Survey Malaysian Questionnaire18 (HLS-M-Q18) instrument was conducted as part of the National Health Morbidity Survey 2019 in Malaysia. The nationwide survey utilized two-staged stratified random sampling method. A sample of 9478 individuals aged 18 and above participated in the study. The health literacy score was divided into three levels; limited, sufficient and excellent. Findings showed that majority Malaysian population has sufficient health literacy level, albeit leaning towards the lower end of the category with an average score of 35.5. The limited health literacy groups are associated with respondents with older age, lower education level and lower household income. Overall health literacy state for Malaysia is categorized at a lower sufficient level. Health literacy improvements should focus on communities with limited health literacy level.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201707.0012.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nutrition Keywords: diabetes; water intake; mineral water; magnesium; bicarbonate; review; prevention
Online: 6 July 2017 (18:12:04 CEST)
To address the question whether there is evidence that drinking water in general or mineral water in particular is effective in preventing diabetes; we performed a literature search of randomized controlled trials (PubMed). The search resulted in very few trials (N = 9) investigating this topic: one trial investigates the effect of increasing water consumption on glycemic control in diabetic patients; two trials investigate the effect of drinking water with a meal in diabetic patients; while six trials compare the effect of mineral rich water with that of low mineralized water on glucose metabolism in healthy subjects. There is evidence that increasing water consumption can improve glucose metabolism and randomized controlled trials with mineral water suggest that waters containing relevant amounts of magnesium can exert an additional effect. The role of bicarbonate; which is present in all the mineral waters used in the trials; will be discussed. Future research needs to investigate the effect of mineral water in prediabetic individuals or individuals with impaired glycemic control.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202211.0099.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Dermatology Keywords: Clothing; Health Promotion; Skin Cancer Prevention; Sport; Ultraviolet Radiation
Online: 7 November 2022 (02:06:38 CET)
Australia and New Zealand have the highest incidence of skin cancer. Sport is a fundamental part of Australasian culture, beginning in childhood, often with life-long participation. Participating in outdoor sports can contribute significantly to the lifetime ultraviolet radiation (UVR) dose individuals receive and their risk of developing skin cancer. This systematic scoping review explores the use of sun-protection by outdoor sporting participants in Australasia and considers how sun-protection practices may be better evaluated and improved in the community. A search of electronic databases using the search strategy “sun protection” AND “sport” AND “Australia” yielded 17 studies published in English from January 1992 to August 2021. Study methods included using UV-dosimeters to measure individual UVR-exposure; remote estimates of clothing-adjusted UVR-exposure; direct observation of sun-protection practices; and self-reported sun-exposure and sun-protection. Despite 40-years of ‘Slip Slop Slap’ campaigns in Australia, the use of sun-protection in most outdoor sports is inadequate. The paucity of comparable data limited our analyses, demonstrating a need for standardized, objective evaluation tools. Such tools, if used across a range of sports, should inform the development of workable recommendations that sporting clubs could implement and adopt into policy, thus empowering them to better protect the health of their participants.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202211.0506.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Other Keywords: Integration; Medical and disease prevention; Mediating effect; Public health; Symbiotic
Online: 28 November 2022 (08:56:17 CET)
Background: The COVID-19 outbreak has accelerated the huge difference between medical care and disease prevention in Chinese medical institutions. This study aimed to investigated the relationship between the symbiotic units, environments, models, and effects of the integration of medical and disease prevention. Methods: This cross-sectional study involved 762 employees of public hospitals in 11 cities in Zhejiang Province by random stratified sampling. We analyzed the influence paths of elements in the mechanism of integration of medical and disease prevention and the mediating effect of symbiotic models among symbiotic units, symbiotic environments, and effects for on this integration. Results: The path coefficient of symbiotic unit on the symbiosis model was 0.46 (p<.001), the path coefficient of symbiotic environment on symbiosis model was 0.52 (p<.001). The path coefficient of the symbiotic unit and environment was 0.91 (p<.001). The symbiotic models exhibited a partial mediation effect between symbiotic units and the effect of this integration. Sobel test = 3.27, β = 0.152, and the mediating effect accounted for 34.6%. Conclusions: It is suggested that Health policy-makers and public hospital managers should provide sufficient symbiotic units, establish collaborative symbiotic models, and improve the effects of integration of medical and disease prevention in public hospitals.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202006.0086.v2
Subject: Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: SARS-CoV-2; Genome organisation and expression; Polyproteins; Prevention strategies
Online: 14 June 2020 (16:49:10 CEST)
COVID-19 manifests regarding extreme acute respiratory conditions caused by a novel beta coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) which is reported to be the seventh coronavirus to infect humans. Like other SARS-CoVs it has a large positive-stranded RNA genome. But specific furin site in the spike protein, mutation prone and phylogenetically mess Orf1ab separates SARS-CoV-2 from other RNA viruses. Since, the outbreak (February - March 2020) which originated in China, researchers, scientists, and medical professionals are inspecting all possible facts from every possible aspect including its replication, detection, and prevention strategies. This led to the prompt identification of its basic biology, genome characterization, structural based functional information of proteins, and strategies to prevent its spread. Due to the rapid mutation rate, the functional characterization of a few proteins is still lagging. This review summarizes the recent updates on the basic molecular biology of SARS-CoV-2 and prevention strategies undertaken worldwide to tackle COVID-19. This recent information can be implemented for the development and designing of therapeutics against SARS-CoV-2.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202208.0171.v2
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Pharmacology & Toxicology Keywords: combination; antimicrobial resistance; selection index; collateral sensitivity; mutant prevention concentration; minimal inhibitory concentration; fractional inhibitory concentration index; stress factor
Online: 13 September 2022 (07:53:32 CEST)
Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) has been a serious threat to human health, and combination therapy is proved to be an economic and effective strategy to fight the resistance. However, the abuse of drug combinations would conversely accelerate the spread of AMR. In our previous work, it had been concluded that the mutant selection indexes (SIs) of one agent against a specific bacterial strain are closely related to the proportions of two agents in a drug combination. To discover probable correlations, predictors and laws for further proposing feasible principles and schemes guiding the AMR-preventing practice, here three aspects were further explored. First, the power function (y=axb, a > 0) correlation between the SI (y) of one agent and the ratio value (x) of two agents in a drug combination was further established based on the mathematical and statistical analyses for those experimental data, and two rules a1 × MIC1 = a2 × MIC2 and b1 + b2 = -1 were discovered from both equations of y=a1xb1 and y=a2xb2 respectively for two agents in drug combinations. Simultaneously, it was found that one agent with larger MPC alone for drug combinations show greater potency for narrowing itself MSW and preventing the resistance. Second, a new concept as mutation-preventing selection index (MPSI) was proposed and used for evaluating the mutation-preventing potency difference of two agents in drug combinations, and the positive correlation between the MPSI and the mutant prevention concentration (MPC) or minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) was subsequently established. Inspired by this, the significantly positive correlation, contrary to previous reports, between the MIC and the corresponding MPC of antimicrobial agents against pathogenic bacteria was established using one hundred and eighty-one of data pairs reported. These results together of above three aspects indicate that the MPCs in alone and combination are very important indexes for drug combinations to predict the mutation-preventing effects and the trajectories of collateral sensitivity, and while the MPC of an agent can be roughly calculated from its corresponding MIC. Subsequently, the former conclusion was further verified and improved by the antibiotic exposure to forty-three groups designed as different drug concentrations and various proportions. The results further proposed that the C/MPC for the agent with larger proportion in drug combinations can be considered as a predictor and is the key to judge whether the resistance and the collateral sensitivity occur to two agents. Based on these above correlations, laws, and their verification experiments, some principles were proposed, and a diagram of the mutation-preventing effects and the resistant trajectories for drug combinations with different concentrations and ratios of two agents was presented. Simultaneously, the reciprocal of MPC alone (1/MPC), proposed as the stress factors of two agents in drug combinations, together with their SI in combination, is the key to predict the mutation-preventing potency and control the trajectories of collateral sensitivity. Finally, a preliminary scheme for antimicrobial combinations preventing the AMR was further proposed for subsequent improvement research and clinic popularization, based on the above analyses and discussion. Moreover, some similar conclusions were speculated for triple or multiple drug combinations.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202205.0370.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: Acute non hepA–E hepatitis; clinical manifestations; epidemiological characteristics; prevention
Online: 27 May 2022 (08:41:42 CEST)
The emergence of acute, severe non hepA–E hepatitis of unknown etiology (ASHUE) has attracted global concern owing to the very young age of the patients and its unknown etiology. Although this condition has been linked to several possible causes, including viral infection, drugs, and/or toxin exposure, the exact cause remains unknown; this makes treatment recommendations very difficult. In this review, we summarize recent updates on the clinical manifestations, complemented with laboratory results, case numbers with the global distribution and other epidemiological characteristics, and the possible etiologies. We also provide the proposed actions that could be undertaken to control and prevent further spread of this hepatitis. Since many etiological and pathological aspects of the acute non hepA–E hepatitis remain unclear, further research is needed to minimize the severe impact of this disease.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202108.0471.v1
Subject: Mathematics & Computer Science, Information Technology & Data Management Keywords: Big data; Health prevention; Machine learning; Medical data
Online: 24 August 2021 (14:00:12 CEST)
CVDs are a leading cause of death globally. In CVDs, the heart is unable to deliver enough blood to other body regions. Since effective and accurate diagnosis of CVDs is essential for CVD prevention and treatment, machine learning (ML) techniques can be effectively and reliably used to discern patients suffering from a CVD from those who do not suffer from any heart condition. Namely, machine learning algorithms (MLAs) play a key role in the diagnosis of CVDs through predictive models that allow us to identify the main risks factors influencing CVD development. In this study, we analyze the performance of ten MLAs on two datasets for CVD prediction and two for CVD diagnosis. Algorithm performance is analyzed on top-two and top-four dataset attributes/features with respect to five performance metrics –accuracy, precision, recall, f1-score, and roc-auc – using the train-test split technique and k-fold cross-validation. Our study identifies the top two and four attributes from each CVD diagnosis/prediction dataset. As our main findings, the ten MLAs exhibited appropriate diagnosis and predictive performance; hence, they can be successfully implemented for improving current CVD diagnosis efforts and help patients around the world, especially in regions where medical staff is lacking.
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: Cancer; Cancer Prevention; Cancer Therapy; Immune Boosting Interventions
Online: 30 April 2021 (15:52:40 CEST)
Cancer risk is known to increase tremendously when the immune system is suppressed, e.g., as observed in young organ-transplant recipients and AIDS patients. Based on such data, it may be hypothesized that the main reason for the development of clinical cancer is the weakening or suppression of the immune system, and that uncontrolled multiplication of cancer cells occurs when some aspects of the immune system fall below certain critical levels. Therefore, cancer may be prevented and treated by boosting these critical aspects of the immune system so that they are maintained above the critical levels. If multiple immune system boosting interventions are utilized, more aspects of the immune system would be boosted, increasing the likelihood of enhancing the critical aspects of the immune system and generating a cancer preventive and/or therapeutic effect. Clinical trials are needed to validate this approach for cancer prevention and treatment. If validated, the proposed approach could result in a major reduction of the death and suffering caused by cancer in the world.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202005.0502.v1
Subject: Keywords: Online exam, cheating prevention, discrete optimization, social distancing
Online: 31 May 2020 (20:20:46 CEST)
Cheating prevention in online exams is often hard and costly to tackle with proctoring, and it even sometimes involves privacy issues, especially in social distancing due to the pandemic of COVID-19. Here we propose a low-cost and privacy-preserving anti-cheating scheme by programmatically minimizing the cheating gain. A novel anti-cheating scheme we developed theoretically ensures that the cheating gain of all students can be controlled below a desired level aided by the prior knowledge of students’ abilities and a proper assignment of question sequences. Furthermore, a heuristic greedy algorithm we developed can refine an assignment of questions from a cyclic pool of question sequences to efficiently reduce the cheating gain. Compared to the integer linear programming and min-max matching methods in a small-scale simulation, our heuristic algorithm provides results close to the optimal solutions offered by the two standard discrete optimization methods. Hence, our anti-cheating approach could potentially be a cost-effective solution to the well-known cheating problem even without proctoring.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0465.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Other Keywords: laboratory-acquired brucellosis; prevention; biosafety; cultures; identification; biochemical tests; MALDI-TOF; FISH; laboratory-acquired brucellosis; prevention; biosafety; cultures; identification; biochemical tests; MALDI-TOF; FISH
Online: 20 July 2020 (09:38:57 CEST)
Brucellosis is one of the most common etiologies of laboratory-acquired infections worldwide, and handling of living brucellae should be performed in a Class II biological safety cabinet. The low infecting dose, multiple portals of entry to the body, the great variety of potentially contaminated specimens, and the unspecific clinical manifestations of human infections facilitate the unintentional transmission of brucellae to laboratory personnel. Work accidents such as spillage of culture media cause only a small minority of exposures, whereas >80% of events result from unfamiliarity with the phenotypic features of the genus, misidentification of isolates, and unsafe laboratory practices such as aerosolization of bacteria and working on an open bench without protective goggles or gloves. Although the bacteriological diagnosis of brucellae by traditional methods is simple, the Gram stain and the biochemical profile of the organism, as determined by commercial kits, can be misleading, resulting in inadvertent exposure and contagion. The use of novel identification technologies is not hazard-free. The MALDI-TOF technology requires an initial bacterial inactivation step, while the instruments’ reference database may misidentify Brucella as belonging to other Gram-negative species. The rapid identification by the FISH method mistakes brucellar isolates for members of the closely related Ochrobactrum genus.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201710.0047.v2
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: HPA axis; NGFs; psychiatric disorders; prevention of mental diseases; stress
Online: 4 December 2017 (07:45:28 CET)
Apart from their established role in embryonic development Nerve Growth Factors (NGFs) have diverse functions in the nervous system. Their role in integration of physiological functioning of the nervous system is now attracting attention. In the present analysis, we propose a novel paradigm about a novel role of NGFs: NGFs play imperative role in maintaining psychological integrity of an individual as a biological system. This function may be mediated through HPA-axis- operated homeostatic mechanisms; stress induced disruption of which may lead to psychiatric disorders. Current literature suggests existence of constitutive homeostatic regulatory mechanisms for NGFs disruption which may lead to pertinent and imperative behavioural effects. NGFs are known to play crucial role in endocrine regulation. This is especially true with the prototype ‘NGF’ and Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF). These moieties have been observed to play important function in maintaining neuro-endocrine homeostasis thereby having a profound impact on the psychological health of an individual. Role of NGFs and HPA-axis activation (in separate studies) in developing psychiatric disorders - especially those born of stress - have been reported. Literature suggests their unique interplay for producing a common effect which might be implicated in stress induced genesis of psychiatric disorders. This aspect, therefore, needs to be elucidated further as a disease etiogenesis model. This model may yield important insights into the biology of psychiatric disorders and may open ways for new therapeutic approaches.
COMMUNICATION | doi:10.20944/preprints202203.0096.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Cardiology Keywords: hypertension; blood pressure; lifestyle; digital health; ehealth; prevention; behavioral change
Online: 7 March 2022 (10:55:20 CET)
Worldwide, it is estimated that at least 1 in 4 adults suffers from hypertension, and this number is expected to increase as populations grow and age. Blood pressure (BP) possesses substantial heritability, but is also heavily modulated by lifestyle factors. As such, digital, lifestyle-based in-terventions are a promising alternative to standard care for hypertension prevention and man-agement. In this study we assessed the prevalence of elevated and high BP in a Dutch general pop-ulation cohort undergoing a health screening, and observed the effects of a subsequent self-initiated, digitally-enabled lifestyle program on BP regulation. Baseline data were available for 348 participants, of which 56 had partaken in a BP-focused lifestyle program and got re-measured 10 months after the intervention. Participants with elevated SBP and DBP at baseline showed a mean decrease of 7.2 mmHg and 5.4 mmHg, respectively. Additionally, 70% and 72.5% of participants showed an improvement in systolic and diastolic BP at remeasurement. These improvements in BP are superior to those seen in other recent studies. The long-term sustainability and the efficacy of this and similar digital lifestyle interventions will need to be estab-lished in additional, larger studies.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201809.0204.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nursing & Health Studies Keywords: ideal cardiovascular health; cardiovascular disease; health status; prevention and control; Poland
Online: 12 September 2018 (00:53:55 CEST)
Perfect cardiovascular health (CVH) has been defined by the American Heart Association as the lack of cardiovascular disease and the presence of seven key factors and health behaviors. In this study, we aimed to estimate the prevalence of ideal and poor CVH among the Polish adult population, taking the chosen socio-demographic factors into consideration. This is a cross-sectional study conducted among 3,901 adults without cardiovascular diseases, aged between 35 and 64 years. Participants completed a questionnaire, and they had anthropometric and physiological measurements taken. Blood samples were analyzed for fasting glucose and cholesterol levels. Ideal CVH was found in 5.4% of the participants, with the advantage of being toward city dwellers over those living in the rural areas (6.3% vs. 5.0%) p = 0.02. In case of the residents of rural areas, their likelihood of having an ideal body mass index (BMI) was found to be 22% lower (odds ratio (OR) = 0.78; 95% CI: 0.66–0.92), their likelihood of having an ideal diet was found to be 27% lower (OR = 0.71; 95% CI: 0.54–0.94), their likelihood of having perfect blood pressure was found to be 29% lower (OR = 0.71; 95% CI: 0.56–0.89), and their likelihood of having the perfect glucose levels were found to be 28% lower (OR = 0.72; 95% CI: 0.63–0.84), than the residents of urban areas. The prevalence of ideal cardiovascular behaviors and factors is lower in the rural community compared with people living in the city. Results indicate that more effort should be dedicated toward the country’s health policy, specifically concerning primary prevention. Preventive actions in the field of cardiovascular disease should be addressed to the residents of rural areas to a larger extent.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201705.0079.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Oncology & Oncogenics Keywords: heterocyclic amines (HCAs); meat intake; colorectal cancer; colorectal adenomas; cancer prevention
Online: 9 May 2017 (06:13:18 CEST)
Several evidences suggest that the positive association between meat intake and colorectal adenoma (CRA) and cancer (CRC) risk is mediated by mutagenic compounds generated during cooking at high temperature. A number of epidemiological studies have estimated the effect of meat-related mutagens intake on CRC/CRA risk with contradictory and sometime inconsistent results. A literature search was carried out (PubMed, Web of Science and Scopus) to identify articles reporting the relationship between the intake of meat-related mutagens (2-amino-1-methyl-6-phenylimidazo[4,5-b]pyridine: PhIP, 2-amino-3,8-dimethylimidazo[4,5-f] quinoxaline: MeIQx, 2-amino-3,4,8-trimethylimidazo[4,5-f] quinoxaline: DiMeIQx, benzo(a) pyrene: (B(a)P) and “meat derived mutagenic activity”: MDM) and CRC/CRA risk. A random-effect model was used to calculate the risk association. Thirty-nine studies were included in the systematic review and meta-analysis. Polled CRA risk (15229 cases) was significantly increased by intake of PhIP (OR=1.20; 95%CI:1.13,1.28; p<0.001), MeIQx (OR=1.14; 95%CI:1.05,1.23; p=0.001), DiMeIQx (OR=1.13; 95%CI:1.05,1.21; p=0.001), B(a)P (OR=1.10; 95%CI:1.02,1.19; p=0.017) and MDM (OR=1.17; 95%CI:1.07,1.28; p=0.001). A linear and curvilinear trend was observed in dose-response meta-analisis between CRA risk in association with PhIP and MDM, MeIQx, respectively. CRC risk (21344 cases) was increased by uptake of MeIQx (OR=1.14; 95%CI:1.04,1.25; p=0.004), DiMeIQx (OR=1.12; 95%CI:1.02,1.22; p=0.014) and MDM (OR=1.12; 95%CI:1.06,1.19; p<0.001). No publication bias could be detected whereas heterogeneity was in some cases rather high. Mutagenic compounds formed during cooking of meat at high temperature may be responsible of its carcinogenicity.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0235.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Atmospheric Science Keywords: database; disaster prevention; disaster risk reduction (DRR); climate change adaptation (CCA); stakeholders; nature-based solutions (NBS); mountain; hydro-meteorological risks
Online: 9 December 2020 (16:48:34 CET)
In the context of global changes, Nature-Based Solutions (NBSs) increasingly draw attention as a possible way to reduce disaster risk associated with extreme hydro-meteorological events while providing human well-being and biodiversity benefits at the same time. The PHUSICOS platform is dedicated to gather and analyse relevant NBSs used to reduce disaster risk associated with extreme hydro-meteorological events in mountainous and hilly lands. To design the platform, an in-depth review of 11 existing platforms has been performed. The platform currently references 152 literature NBS cases and is continuously enriched with demonstrator sites through the contribution of NBS community. The platform also proposes a qualitative assessment of the NBSs collected according to 15 criteria related with five ambits: disaster risk reduction, technical and economical feasibility, environment, society and local economy. This paper presents the structure of the platform and a first analysis of its content.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202108.0382.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Geography Keywords: living conditions; crime prevention; crime-exposed areas; strategic mapping; GIS; Police
Online: 18 August 2021 (14:04:19 CEST)
This paper presents a theoretically and methodologically grounded GIS-based model for the measurement and mapping of an index of living conditions in urban residential areas across Sweden. Further, the model is compared and evaluated using the Swedish Police’s assessment of crime-exposed areas. The results indicate that geographically measured vulnerable living conditions overlap to a large extent with the areas assessed to be crime-exposed by the Swedish Police. Over 61% of the police-defined crime-exposed areas are characterized by vulnerable living conditions. The results also show that the overlap is not perfect and that there are vulnerable areas that are not included in the police’s assessment of crime-exposed areas, but which are nonetheless characterized by vulnerable living conditions that could negatively affect the development of crime. It is also proposed that the model and the mapped index of living conditions provide a more well-grounded scientific basis for the police's assessment work. As a first step, the Swedish police have implemented the model and the mapped index in the work process employed in their annual identification of crime-exposed or at-risk areas. In addition to assisting the police, the model and the mapped index could also be used to support other societal actors working with vulnerable areas.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0099.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Cardiology Keywords: vascular endothelial function; inflammation; oxidative stress; cardiovascular disease prevention; disease management
Online: 6 July 2020 (09:08:34 CEST)
In atherosclerosis patients, vascular endothelial dysfunction is commonly observed with damage of vascular endothelial glycocalyx, an extracellular matrix-bound to and encapsulating the endothelial cell lining the blood vessel wall. Unfavorable lifestyle; smoking and physical inactivity, also induces glycocalyx degradation. Moreover, the vascular endothelial glycocalyx is damaged by various unfavorable disease conditions like as dehydration, acute infectious disease, trauma, sepsis, ARDS, Kawasaki disease, preeclampsia, gestational diabetes mellitus, hypertension, diabetes, chronic kidney disease, atherosclerosis, stroke, dementia, microvascular angina, acute coronary syndrome, and heart failure. The vascular endothelial glycocalyx has been shown to be important not only as a physical cytoprotective barrier for vascular endothelial cells but also as a mechanism that regulates intracellular cell signaling. Therefore, vascular endothelial glycocalyx has great potential to explore new strategies for assessing the benefit conditions of our healthy vasculature.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202210.0369.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Oncology & Oncogenics Keywords: Covid-19; health literacy; cancer screening; cancer care; cancer prevention
Online: 25 October 2022 (02:02:04 CEST)
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to numerous delays in cancer-related care and cancer-specific screening, but the extent is not fully understood. For those that experience a delay or disruption in care, health related self-management is required to re-engage in care pathways and the role of health literacy in this pathway has not been explored. The purpose of this analysis is to (1) report the frequency of self-reported delays in cancer treatment and preventative screening services at an academic, NCI-designated center during the COVID-19 pandemic and (2) investigate cancer-related care and screening delays among those with adequate and limited health literacy. A cross-sectional survey was administered from an NCI-designated Cancer Center with a rural catchment area during November 2020 through March 2021. Nearly 19 percent of participants were categorized as having limited health literacy. Twenty percent of those with a cancer diagnosis reported a delay in cancer-related care; and 23-30% of the sample reported a delay in cancer screening. In general, the proportions of delays among those with adequate and limited health literacy were similar with the exception of colorectal cacner screening. There was also a notable difference in the ability to re-engage in cervical cancer screening among those with adequate and limited health literacy. Thus, there is a role for those engaged in cancer-related education and outreach to offer additional navigation resources for those at risk to cancer-related care and screening disruptions. Future study is warranted to investigate the role of health literacy on cancer care engagement.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202111.0005.v1
Subject: Mathematics & Computer Science, Applied Mathematics Keywords: prevention of explosion risks; fireball; thermal radiation; computational geometry; geometric algorithms.
Online: 1 November 2021 (11:18:26 CET)
Radiation Fireballs are singular phenomena which involve severe thermal radiation and consequently, they need to be duly assessed and prevented. Although the radiative heat transfer produced by a sphere is relatively well known, the shadowing measures implemented to control the fireball’s devastating effects have frequently posed a difficult analytical instance, mainly due to its specific configuration. In this article, since the usual solving equations for the said cases are impractical, the authors propose a novel graphic-algorithm method that sorts the problem efficiently for different kinds of obstructions and relative positions of the fireball and the defenses. Adequate application of this method may improve the safety of a significant number of facilities exposed to such risks.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202104.0136.v1
Subject: Keywords: COVID-19; behavioral interventions; prevention; workplace safety; safety protocols
Online: 5 April 2021 (12:54:54 CEST)
Practicing preventive etiquettes such as hand washing, hand disinfection, wearing a face mask, practicing physical distancing, disinfection of surfaces and objects can help curb the transmission of COVID-19 at the workplace. This paper focuses on interventions and behaviors required to curb the spread of COVID-19 at workplaces. We undertook a detailed multi-disciplinary literature search on the following topics: hand hygiene, respiratory hygiene, physical distancing, quarantine and isolation, disinfection of objects and surfaces, behavior change, and health crisis communication. We identified interventions that are effective for preventing the spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-Cov-2) at workplaces. These findings present very useful non-clinical interventions for preventing COVID-19 in the work environment.
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Dentistry Keywords: COVID-19; pandemics; pediatric dentistry; oral health prevention; coronavirus
Online: 16 May 2020 (18:11:49 CEST)
During the period of health emergency linked to the current COVID-19 pandemic, the management of children's oral health presents specific problems related to the infectious spread of the disease. These problems must be faced on the one hand by acting on the oral health prevention methods, and on the other by implementing specific protocols relating both to the conditions of oral pathologies that normally do not represent an emergency, and to those clinical situations that fall into the category of pediatric dental emergencies. In this perspective, in addition to defining rigorous and highly effective infection control protocols in the dental settings, it is of fundamental importance to work on remote communication and education aimed at maintaining the oral health of the children. This article, after an analysis of the risk factors from COVID-19 associated with pediatric dental treatment, presents a series of considerations on potential oral prevention strategies and on the management of emergency and non-emergency dental procedures in a context of disease transmission control, proposing new approaches and models of treatment based also on remote interaction techniques which will then retain their usefulness even at the end of the current emergency period.
HYPOTHESIS | doi:10.20944/preprints202004.0090.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Pharmacology & Toxicology Keywords: COVID-19: hydroxychloroquine aerosol; pharmacotherapy; prevention; SARS-CoV-2
Online: 7 April 2020 (11:11:09 CEST)
Covid-19 is a new coronavirus disease first described in December 2019. This respiratory illness is severe and potentially fatal. Severe cases make up to 15%, lethality ranges between 1.5 and more than 10 %. What is urgently needed is an efficient pharmacological treatment for the treatment of severe cases. During the infection of alveolar epithelial cells of the lung, the ACE2 receptor has a central function. The antimalarial drugs chloroquine phosphate (CQ) and hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) impair in vitro the terminal glycosylation of ACE2 without significant change of cell-surface ACE2 and, therefore, might be potent inhibitors of SARS-CoV-2 infections. Starting inhibition at 0.1 µM, CQ completely prevented in vitro infections at 10 µM, suggesting a prophylactic effect and preventing the virus spread 5 hours after infection. In a first clinical trial, CQ was effective in inhibiting exacerbation of pneumonia, improving lung imaging findings, promotion of virus-negative conversion, and shortening the disease. In addition, HCQ, which is three times more potent than CQ in SARS-CoV-2 infected cells (EC50 0.72 µM), was significantly associated with viral load reduction/disappearance in COVID-19 patients compared to controls. Theoretically, CQ and HCQ could thus be effectively used in the treatment of SARS-CoV pneumonia. From a pharmacological standpoint, however, the major problems of oral treatment with these drugs are possible severe side effects and toxicity. Concretely, this relates to (a) the inconsistent individual bioavailability of these drugs at the alveolar target cells, depending on intestinal resorption, hepatic first-pass metabolism and accumulation in liver, spleen and lung, and (b) the need for a relatively high concentration of 1-5 µM at the alveolar surface. Therefore, we propose in a first dose estimation the use of HCQ as an aerosol in a dosage of 2-4 mg per inhalation in order to reach sufficient therapeutic levels at the alveolar epithelial cells. By using a low-dose non-systemic aerosol, adverse drug reactions will markedly be reduced compared with oral application. This increase in tolerability enables a broader use for prevention and after contact with an infected person, which would be an advantage especially for the high-risk, often multi-morbid and elderly patients. Empirical data on self-medication with a one-week aerosol application by two of the authors is presented. Inhalation was well tolerated without relevant side effects.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201803.0044.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Oncology & Oncogenics Keywords: cancer prevention; carcinogenesis; oral cancer; pharynx cancer; mouthrinses; ethanol.
Online: 6 March 2018 (14:28:22 CET)
Objective: To provide mechanistic evidence for the epidemiological link between long-term use of alcohol containing mouthwashes and oral cancer.Methods: Human epithelial keratinocytes were exposed for 30 seconds to concentrations of ethanol commonly present in mouthwashes. After a recovery period, cell viability was assessed with the MTT assay.Results: A marked cytotoxic effect was observed for ethanol concentrations of 20% and above. Conclusions: The cytotoxicity of ethanol can explain the epidemiological association between mouthwash use and oral cancer. Recent findings indicate that the risk of developing cancer in a tissue is strongly determined by the number of stem cell divisions accumulated by the tissue during a person's lifetime; cell division is a major source of mutations and other cancer-promoting errors. Since cell death activates the division of stem cells, the cytotoxicity of ethanol on the cells lining the oral mucosa will promote the division of the stem cells located in deeper layers to produce new cells to regenerate the damaged epithelium. If we regularly use mouthwashes containing cytotoxic concentrations of ethanol, we will force the stem cells of the oral cavity to divide more often than usual and our risk of developing oral cancer will probably increase.Clinical significance: Many mouthwashes contain percentages of ethanol above 20%. Because ethanol is not crucial to prevent and reduce gingivitis and plaque, members of the dental team should consider the potential risk of oral cancer associated with frequent use of alcohol containing mouthwashes when advising their patients.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202207.0197.v1
Subject: Engineering, Construction Keywords: construction; safety; risk; hazard; critical control risk management; critical control; fatality prevention
Online: 13 July 2022 (09:18:21 CEST)
Across the global construction industry, fatalities continue to occur from high-risk activities where the risk controls have been defined, however were unreliable. In the mining industry, Critical Control Risk Management has provided positive results in reducing major accidents, which raises the question, could the Critical Control approach reduce the fatality rate in the construction industry? This study analysed 10 years of serious and fatal incident investigation reports from four international construction companies to i) assess the reliability of their Critical Controls (CCs) and ii) assess the factors which affect the reliability of CCs. The results show the reliability of CCs, measured by implementation and effectiveness, averaged just 42%. Human performance factors including risk identification, decision-making and competency together with supervision, job planning, communication organisational factors were identified as affecting the reliability of CCs. The study used bow-tie diagrams with real event data to find the actual CC effectiveness. This gave actionable findings directly related to individual CCs enabling the participating organization to focus resources on improving specific verification processes. The results confirm the applicability of CCs for the Major Accident Event hazards analyzed and highlights further review is required of the factors which need to be considered when implementing a CC program. This paper details our methodology and results, to assist others apply CCs as a risk management tool.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202203.0151.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nutrition Keywords: vitamins; micronutrients; deficiencies; screening; general population; lifestyle; prevention; vitamin d; vitamin b12
Online: 10 March 2022 (14:11:38 CET)
Maintaining an adequate micronutrient status can be achieved by following a complete, diverse diet. Yet, food trends in Western countries show suboptimal consumption of healthy nutrients. In this study we explored the prevalence of vitamin and mineral imbalances in a general population cohort of Dutch adults, and evaluated the effect of a digital lifestyle program on the nutritional status and nutrition health behaviors of these individuals. A micronutrient panel was measured in 348 participants, alongside a dietary assessment. One-hundred users subsequently underwent a remeasurement. We identified at least one nutritional imbalance in 301 individuals (86.5%). 80% improved and normalized B6, 67% improved folate, 70% improved B12, and 86% improved vitamin D. Iron abnormalities were corrected in 75% of participants. In conclusion, this study found micronutrient deficiencies of easily obtainable vitamins through diet or supplementation such as B vitamins and vitamin D were more prevalent than expected in a Dutch population. This can partly be explained by an insufficient consumption of food groups rich in B vita-mins. Our preliminary results in those remeasured after a digitally-enabled lifestyle intervention show these imbalances can be corrected with adequate behavioral support in a “food as medicine” approach complemented with supplementation where needed.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202205.0017.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nutrition Keywords: food safety; local health departments; food inspection; primary prevention; food safety policy
Online: 4 May 2022 (15:38:09 CEST)
(1) Background: Several agencies in the United States play a primary role in ensuring food safety, yet foodborne illnesses result in about 3,000 deaths and cost more than $15.6 billion each year. The study objectives included analyzing local health departments’ (LHDs) level of engagement in food safety and other related services, and LHDs’ characteristics associated with those services. (2) Methods: We used data from 1,496 LHDs that participated in the 2019 National Profile of Local Health Departments Survey, administered to all 2,459 LHDs in the United States. Logistic regression analyses were performed to model multiple dichotomous variables. (3) Results: An estimated 78.9% of LHDs performed food safety inspections, 78.3% provided food safety education, 40.7% provided food processing inspections, and 48.4% engaged in policy and advocacy. The odds for LHDs to directly provide preventive nutrition services were 20 times higher if the LHD had one or more nutritionists on staff (Adjusted Odds Ratio or AOR=20.0; Confidence Interval, CI=12.4-32.2) compared to LHDs with no nutritionists. Other LHD characteristics significantly associated with the provision of nutrition services (p<.05) included population size, state governance (rather than local), and LHD having at least one registered, licensed, practical, or vocational nurse. The odds of providing food processing services were lower for locally governed than state governed LHDs (AOR=0.5; CI=0.4-0.7). The odds of performing food safety inspections varied by LHD’s population size, whether a nutritionist was on staff or not, state governance (vs. local), and having completed a community health assessment (CHA) within 5 years. (4) Conclusions: LHDs play a critical role in ensuring safe food for Americans, yet variations exist in their performance, based on their specific characteristics. Adequate funding and a competent workforce are essential for LHDs to utilize evidence-based practices and engage in policymaking and advocacy concerning food safety.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202103.0712.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Oncology & Oncogenics Keywords: dietary fibers; short chain fatty acid; gut microbiota; colorectal cancer prevention; epigenetics
Online: 29 March 2021 (22:22:00 CEST)
Dietary factors play an important role in shaping the gut microbiome which, in turn, regulates the molecular events in colonic mucosa. The composition and resulting metabolism of the gut microbiome have been implicated in the development of colorectal cancer (CRC). Diets low in dietary fibers and phytomolecules as well as other lifestyle-related factors may predispose to CRC. Emerging evidence demonstrates that the predominance of microbes, such as Fusobacterium nucleatum, can predispose the colonic mucosa to malignant transformation. Dietary and lifestyle modifications have been demonstrated to restrict the growth of potentially harmful opportunistic organisms. In this study, we aim to present evidence regarding the relationship of dietary factors to the gut microbiome and development of CRC.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202206.0265.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Political Science Keywords: COVID-19 prevention; vulnerability index; inequality; concentration index; South Africa
Online: 20 June 2022 (09:56:12 CEST)
To contain and mitigate the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, African governments have implemented non-pharmacological interventions (NPIs), such as imposing travel bans, confining people to their homes and closing schools, shops and workplaces. These NPIs are likely to be less effective in circumstances where people need to leave their homes to work, collect food, water and cooking fuel or where people cannot maintain distancing due to overcrowded living environments. Using data from the nationally representative South African General Household Survey 2019, we examined individuals’ vulnerability to the risk of COVID-19 infection due to their health, socioeconomic and living circumstances. We explored socioeconomic-related inequalities in COVID-19 using concentration curve and concentration index methods. Our results showed that vulnerability to COVID-19 was disproportionately concentrated among those with low socioeconomic status. Using the Recentered Influence Function decomposition approach, we found that higher income and education had a significant and positive impact on reducing socioeconomic-related COVID-19 vulnerability. Conversely, people with lower socioeconomic status were more likely to live in circumstances that made compliance with NPI requirements almost impossible, and they were also more likely to have pre-existing health conditions that made them more vulnerable to COVID-19.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202206.0096.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: Hepatitis E; Associated risk factors; Pregnant women; Environment; Prevention; Senegal
Online: 7 June 2022 (08:06:52 CEST)
In West Africa, research on the hepatitis E virus (HEV) is barely covered despite the recorded outbreaks. The still low level of access to safe water and adequate sanitation is one of the main factors of HEV spread in developing countries. HEV infection induces acute or sub-clinical liver diseases with a mortality rate ranging from 0.5 to 4%. The mortality rate is more alarming (15 to 25%) among pregnant women, especially in the last trimester of pregnancy. Here, we conducted a multicentric socio-demographic and seroepidemiological survey of HEV in Senegal among pregnant women. A total of 1,227 consenting participants attending antenatal clinics responded to our questionnaire. Plasma samples were collected and tested for anti-HEV IgM and IgG by using the WANTAI HEV-IgM and IgG ELISA assay. HEV global seroprevalence was 7.9% with 0.5% and 7.4% for HEV IgM and HEV IgG, respectively. One participant's sample was IgM/IgG positive, while four were declared indeterminate to anti-HEV IgM as per the manufacturer's instructions. From one locality to another, the seroprevalence of HEV antibodies varied from 0 to 1% for HEV IgM and from 1.5 to 10.5% for HEV IgG. The data also showed that seroprevalence varied significantly by marital status (p<0.0001), by the regularity of income (p=0.0043) and by access to sanitation services (p=0.0006). These data could serve as a basis to setup national prevention strategies focused on socio-cultural, environmental and behavioral aspects for a better management of HEV infection in Senegal.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202006.0248.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Immunology Keywords: probiotic; upper respiratory tract infection (URTI); infection; prevention; common cold
Online: 21 June 2020 (10:07:31 CEST)
Background: Probiotics can provide health benefits to an individual by regulation of the immune system. Many clinical trials have found that probiotics can prevent upper respiratory tracts infections. Aim: To perform a systematic review and meta-analysis of available trials to investigate the effectiveness of probiotics in the prevention of upper respiratory tract infections in individuals of all ages. Conclusion: Probiotics were found to be better in reducing the number of participants who experienced acute URTI, the average duration per episode of acute URTI, use of antibiotics in URTI related cases and absence due to URTI. Side effects were found to be minor, making probiotics a good candidate for clinical use. This shows that probiotics are effective in preventing acute URTIs. However, due to limited studies and small sample size, the results are subjected to bias and should be interpreted with care.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201811.0060.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Education Studies Keywords: School coexistence; cyberbullying; education; family; victims; prevention; management; training; perceptions
Online: 2 November 2018 (13:12:16 CET)
The present work analyzes university students' perceptions on cyberbullying. More specifically, the main objective was to understand the level of concern displayed by young students in teacher training programs regarding cyberbullying; our analysis includes their degree of self-confidence and their commitment when faced with this problem, their self-reported training on the subject, and the measures they consider adequate to approach it in the educational context. Using a survey research design, 408 students from Early Childhood Education, Primary Education Degrees, and the Master’s Degree in Secondary Education, and Vocational Training from national public universities participated. The results shed light upon the coexistence of three differentiated profiles of teachers in training when faced with cyberbullying. However, although there is clear evidence of the high level of concern regarding this problem in every case, they placed more importance on raising awareness of the issue with families, prevention, management and training as basic pillars for re-directing the worrisome reality experienced in educational centers. The need to include these contents in the initial training of future education professionals, for overcoming cyberbullying, and the importance of collaborative work between parents and educators are the conclusions of this research study that are in agreement with other studies.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201807.0076.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Geoinformatics Keywords: flood; disaster prevention; emergency response; decision making, Google earth engine
Online: 4 July 2018 (15:33:44 CEST)
This paper reports the efforts made and experiences gained in developing the Flood Prevention and Emergency Response System (FPERS) powered by Google Earth Engine, with focus on its applications at the three stages of floods. At the post-flood stage, FPERS integrates various remote sensing imageries, including Formosat-2 optical imagery, to detect and monitor barrier lakes, synthetic aperture radar imagery to derive an inundation map, and high-spatial-resolution photographs taken by unmanned aerial vehicles to evaluate damage to river channels and structures. At the pre-flood stage, a huge amount of geospatial data are integrated in FPERS and are categorized as typhoon forecast and archive, disaster prevention and warning, disaster events and analysis, or basic data and layers. At the during-flood stage, three strategies are implemented to facilitate the access of the real-time data: presenting the key information, making a sound recommendation, and supporting the decision-making. The example of Typhoon Soudelor in August of 2015 is used to demonstrate how FPERS was employed to support the work of flood prevention and emergency response from 2013 to 2016. The capability of switching among different topographic models and the flexibility of managing and searching data through a geospatial database are also explained, and suggestions are made for future works.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints201801.0001.v2
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Other Keywords: Aboriginal; Australia; control; diagnosis; identification; prevention; scabies; sarcoptes scabiei; Torres Strait Islander; treatment
Online: 8 January 2018 (16:00:59 CET)
Background: Scabies is an unfortunately neglected tropical skin disease. Scabies occurs in Australia, however it is drastically more common amongst select socioeconomically disadvantaged groups. Amongst these, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities are affected particularly severely, likely secondary to rampant overcrowding. Methods: This literature review has comprehensively explored the relevant evidence available since the year 2000. Objectives: The objective of this article is to provide updates on the identification, management, and control of scabies in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. The article also aims to reveal issues with these factors that may be contributing to the inflated prevalence of scabies amongst these groups. Conclusions: Diagnosis currently depends upon clinical examination, dermatoscopy, and skin scraping microscopy; all of which are prone to error. In Australia, topical permethrin remains first-line treatment, however resistance is developing. Other management aspects to consider are environmental measures and treating secondary infections. Scabies prevention is far more cost-effective than managing advanced individual cases, typically ensured through mass drug administration of permethrin or ivermectin. Sustained prevention can prove troublesome for some communities. In order to address the status of scabies as a neglected tropical disease, these issues must be managed first.
CONCEPT PAPER | doi:10.20944/preprints201811.0622.v1
Subject: Engineering, Construction Keywords: prevention through design; safety climate; lean construction; transformation-flow-value; lean project delivery system
Online: 30 November 2018 (07:57:22 CET)
The construction industry is one of the most fatal industries, so it is important to pay more attention to safety solutions. Even though work-related accidents are known as major waste in construction projects, little attention has been paid so far to incorporating safety into the lean construction framework. In this research, lean construction theory is reviewed through the lens of safety. That being so, the identified challenges in previous research on improving safety in construction projects are categorized and those related to the concept of lean project delivery are introduced. Then, the principles of the lean construction framework are explained and the relevant changes for incorporating safety into the framework are introduced and discussed. It is expected that this hybrid model would further enrich the lean construction framework. The careful attention of project executives to this model may improve the safety situation in construction projects.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202003.0328.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Other Keywords: COVID-19; disease management; prevention and control; public health; disease outbreaks
Online: 23 March 2020 (01:49:47 CET)
The outbreak of Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has posed a significant concern in many countries due to the rapid rate of transmission between humans. Taking advantage of the experience of the last epidemics in 2002 Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (SARS-CoV) and 2012 Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV), some regions of the world were well- prepared for the new outbreak. However, other countries needed to be adapted to the situation promptly. Many management strategies were established, and some restrictions were introduced in some regions. In this review, we aimed to determine countries’ public responses to the epidemic of COVID-19 and how they developed administrative approaches towards the outbreak.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202005.0516.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nutrition Keywords: Plant-dominant diet; low-protein diet; dietary protein intake; glomerular hyperfiltration; CKD prevention; uremia
Online: 31 May 2020 (21:22:42 CEST)
Chronic kidney disease (CKD) affects >10% of the adult population. Each year approximately 120,000 Americans develop end-stage kideny disease and initiate dialysis, which is costly and associated with functional impairments, worse health-related quality of life, and high early-mortality rates exceeding 20% in the first year. Recent declarations by the World Kidney Day and the U.S. Government Executive Order seek to implement strategies that reduce the burden of kidney failure by slowing CKD progression and controlling uremia without dialysis. Pragmatic dietary interventions may have a role in improving CKD outcomes and preventing or delaying dialysis initiation. Evidence suggests that a patient-centered plant-dominant low-protein diet (PLADO) of 0.6-0.8 g/kg/day comprised of >50% plant-based sources, administered by dietitians trained in non-dialysis CKD care, can be promising. The scientific premise of the PLADO is based on the observations that high protein diets with high meat intake are not only associated with higher cardiovascular disease risk but also higher CKD incidence and faster CKD progression due to increased intraglomerular pressure and glomerular hyperfiltration. Meat intake increases production of nitrogenous end-products, worsens uremia, and may increase the risk of hyperkalemia, given constipation from the typical low fiber intake. Plant-dominant, fiber-rich, low-protein diet may lead to favorable alterations in the gut microbiome, which can modulate uremic toxin generation and slow CKD progression, along with reducing cardiovascular risk in CKD patients. PLADO is a heart-healthy, safe, flexible, and feasible diet that could be the centerpiece of a conservative and preservative CKD-management strategy that challenges the prevailing dialysis-centered paradigm.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202205.0058.v1
Subject: Behavioral Sciences, Other Keywords: warning labels; Health Star Rating; Nutriscore; GDA; food policy; obesity prevention; non-communicable diseases
Online: 6 May 2022 (04:23:49 CEST)
Policies to require front-of-package labels (FOPLs) on foods may help Indian consumers better identify foods high in nutrients of concern including sugar, saturated fat, and sodium, and discourage their consumption, outcomes critical for preventing rises in diet-related non-communicable disease. The objective was to test whether FOPLs helped Indian consumers identify ‘high-in’ foods and reduce intentions to purchase them. We conducted an in-person randomized experiment (n=2,869 adults between ages 18 and 60 years old) in six states of India in 2022. Participants were randomized to one of five FOPLs: a control label (barcode), warning label (octagon with “High in [nutrient]”), Health Star Warning (HSR), Guideline Daily Amount (GDA), or traffic light label. Participants then viewed a series of foods high in sugar, saturated fat, or sodium with the assigned FOPL, and rated product perceptions and label reactions. Fewer than half of participants in the control group (39.1%) correctly identified all products high in nutrient(s) of concern. All FOPLs led to an increase in this outcome, with the biggest differences observed for the warning label (60.8%, p<0.001) followed by the traffic light label (54.8%, p<0.001), GDA (55.0%, p<0.001), and HSR (45.0%, p<0.01). Relative to the control, only the warning label led to a reduction in intentions to purchase the products. The results suggest that warning labels are the most effective FOPL to help Indian consumers identify and avoid unhealthy foods.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202112.0108.v1
Subject: Biology, Animal Sciences & Zoology Keywords: cnidarian venom; cnidocyst discharge; cnidocyte; ocean literacy; risk prevention; seawater; sting; vinegar
Online: 7 December 2021 (14:43:25 CET)
Anemonia viridis is an abundant and widely-distributed temperate sea anemone that can form dense congregations of individuals. Despite the potential severity of its sting, few detailed cases have been reported. We report a case of a severe toxic reaction following an A. viridis sting in a 35-year-old oceanographer. She developed severe pain, itching, redness and burning sensation, which worsened one week after treatment with anti-inflammatories, antihistamines and corticosteroids. Prompted by this event, and due to the insufficient risk prevention, lack of training for marine-environment users and lack of research into sting-specific first-aid protocols, we evaluated the cnidocyst response to five different compounds commonly recommended as rinse solutions in first-aid protocols (seawater, vinegar, ammonia, baking soda and freshwater) by means of the Tentacle Solution Assay. Vinegar and ammonia triggered an immediate and massive cnidocyst discharge after their application and were classified as activator solutions. Baking soda and freshwater were also classified as activator solutions, although with a lower intensity of discharge. Only seawater was classified as a neutral solution and therefore recommended as a rinse solution after A. viridis sting, at least until an inhibitory solution is discovered.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202103.0740.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: occupational noise; job; work; behavioral disorders; psychological disorders; annoyance; occupational medicine; prevention.
Online: 30 March 2021 (13:39:23 CEST)
Chronic exposure to noise can cause several extraordinary effects and involve all the systems of the human organism. In addition to cardiovascular, gastrointestinal and immune effects, the data in the literature show alterations in behavioral disturbances, in memory capacity and cognitive performance. Through this systematic review, the authors try to find out which are the main neurobehavioral alterations, in case of occupational exposure to noise. Literature review included articles published in the major databases (PubMed, Cochrane Library, Scopus), using a combina-tion of some relevant keywords. This online search yielded 4434 references; after selection, the authors analyzed 41 articles (4 narrative reviews and 37 original articles). From this analysis, it appears that main symptoms are related to psychological distress, annoyance, sleep disturbances, cognitive performance. Regarding tasks, the most frequent employments concern school staff, followed by employees from various industrial sectors and office workers. Although the causes are still widely debated, it is essential to protect these workers against chronic exposure to noise. In fact, in addition to a hearing loss, they can manifest many other related discomforts over time and compromise their full working capacity, as well as expose them to a greater risk of accidents or absences from work.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201904.0059.v1
Subject: Keywords: methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus; methicillin-sensitive Staphylococcus aureus; statistics; superbug; hormone; prevention
Online: 5 April 2019 (11:46:16 CEST)
In California, an average of 41,900 patients are diagnosed annually with Staphylococcus bacterial infection; out of these, 24,090 patients have methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infection and 17,810 patients have methicillin-sensitive Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA) infection. The aim of this paper is to find out whether there is a significant difference in strain dominancy and in what direction. The paper gathered and analyzed data for period of five years of infection rate due to Staphylococcus aureus. This study indicates that a significant difference in dominancy exists, the MRSA infection rate (an average of five years period) is 1.35 times higher than the MSSA infection rate (P-value < 0.05, CI: 95%), but the gap between the two infection rates is decreasing. The infection rate of both MRSA and MSSA is in a path of decline.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201811.0339.v1
Subject: Engineering, Electrical & Electronic Engineering Keywords: eHealth; big data; deep learning; watson; spark; decision support system; prevention pathways
Online: 15 November 2018 (04:14:36 CET)
Data collection and analysis are becoming more and more important in a variety of application domains as long as the novel technologies advance. At the same time, we are experiencing a growing need for human-machine interaction with expert systems pushing research through new knowledge representation models and interaction paradigms. In particular, in the last years eHealth - that indicates all the health-care practices supported by electronic elaboration and remote communications - calls for the availability of smart environment and big computational resources. The aim of this paper is to introduce the HOLMeS (Health On-Line Medical Suggestions) framework. The introduced system proposes to change the eHealth paradigm where a trained machine learning algorithm, deployed on a cluster-computing environment, provides medical suggestion via both chat-bot and web-app modules. The chat-bot, based on deep learning approaches, is able to overcome the limitation of biased interaction between users and software, exhibiting a human-like behavior. Results demonstrate the effectiveness of the machine learning algorithms showing 74.65% of Area Under ROC Curve (AUC) when first-level features are used to assess the occurrence of different prevention pathways. When disease-specific features are added, HOLMeS shows 86.78% of AUC achieving a more specific prevention pathway evaluation.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202210.0273.v2
Subject: Engineering, Energy & Fuel Technology Keywords: alternative solid recovered fuel; classification; pelletised sewage sludge; pollution prevention; renewable material; sustainable energy production
Online: 31 October 2022 (01:25:54 CET)
Renewable active sludge is a smart material for wastewater treatment and the protection of surface water bodies. The generated pellets (dried and pelletised dehydrated anaerobically stabilised excess sludge) are produced in a quantity of 31.4 g ± 5.6 g dry matter (DM) per one Population equivalent (PE) calculated to COD (PECOD) in one day. As pellets are combustible material, their energy utilisation must reach sustainable development goals (SDGs) - a bridge must be created between »treated sewage sludge as the tool to remove pollutants and nutrients from wastewater« and »preparation of the valuable material as a solid recovered fuel (SRF) that meets customer-specific requirements«. Technical Report CEN/TR 15508 and Technical Standard EN ISO 21640 set up methods for specifying and classifying pellets as an SRF. In the last eleven years (2010 – 2021), pellets' net calorific value (NCV) is 13.0 ± 0.7 MJ kg-1 as received (ar). In 2021, the 80th percentile of the Hg/NCV ratio was 0.079 mg Hg MJ-1. In 2010 – 2021, the annual amount of Hg transferred to stakeholders reduced by 64.3 % m/m - from 10.1 kg to 3.67 kg. The halogen contents of the pellets do not threaten corrosion to the incineration facility. Stable pellets' energy potential and perspective ash composition for critical raw materials recovery qualify pellets as a specific waste stream and a renewable material for SRF production.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202301.0518.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, General Medical Research Keywords: Langya virus; henipavirus; animal spillover; zoonosis; public health concerns; prevention and control measures
Online: 28 January 2023 (04:53:17 CET)
The risk of 'zoonotic spillovers,' or the transmission of viruses from animals to humans, has been raised by climate change and the devastation of nature, as infectious disease experts have long warned. Even as the world works to stop the spread of the currently unfolding pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and the breakout of monkeypox virus (MPXV), a new animal virus, the Langya henipavirus (LayV), has been discovered in humans in Eastern China. The scientists say there is little danger of the virus spreading among humans, but it shares genetic material with Hendra virus and Nipah virus, two other henipaviruses that infect humans and cause life-threatening respiratory diseases. Humans infected with LayV can expect to experience high body temperature, cough, weariness, poor appetite, muscle discomfort, myalgia, nausea and vomiting. It is likely that the virus will spread from animals to humans. Currently, the health authorities of Taiwan and other health organizations are tracking the progress of the ailment to ensure it does not reach humans. Researchers have examined 25 species of small wild animals for presence of the virus, and so far, shrews are the only ones that have tested positive for the virus's RNA. Based on these results, shrews are a possible candidate for the virus's natural reservoir. Too far, no therapies or vaccines have been developed and licensed for henipaviruses like the LayV. When other therapies fail to alleviate viral infections, ribavirin may be the next best thing. The need for novel vaccinations against the LayV infection and the timely delivery of these vaccines to areas at high epidemiological risk is real. To lessen the likelihood of a health calamity being caused by this newly developing virus, it is crucial to conduct active surveillance in a transparent and globally collaborative manner. The questions that have not been answered yet require additional study.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202110.0067.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nursing & Health Studies Keywords: Multimorbidity; Non-communicable diseases; Lifestyle prevention; Public health; Low and Middle Income Countries
Online: 5 October 2021 (08:04:04 CEST)
Objectives: Low and Middle Income Countries (LMICs) are experiencing a fast-paced epidemiological rise in clusters of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease, forming an imminent rise in multimorbidity (MMD). However, preventing MMD has received little attention in LMICs, especially in Sub-Saharan African Countries. Design: Narrative review which scoped the most recent evidence in LMICs about MMD determinants and appropriated them for potential MMD prevention strategies. Methods: MMD in LMICs is affected by several determinants including increased age, female gender, environment, lower socio-economic status, obesity, and lifestyle behavious, especially poor nutrition and physical inactivity. Results: MMD public health interventions in LMICs, especially Sub-Saharan are currently impeded by local and regional economic disparity, underdeveloped healthcare systems, and concurrent prevalence of communicable diseases. However, lifestyle interventions that are targeted towards preventing highly prevalent MMD clusters, especially hypertension, diabetes and cardiovascular disease, can provide an early prevention of MMD, especially within Sub-Saharan African countries with emerging economies and socio-economic disparity. Conclusion: Future public health initiatives should consider targeted lifestyle interventions and appropriate policies and guidelines in preventing MMD in LMICs.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202104.0530.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: vaccine, pregnancy complication, SARS-CoV-2, COVID-19, maternal complications, pandemic, prevention, safety
Online: 20 April 2021 (11:22:31 CEST)
Introduction.Sars-CoV-2 infection poses particular problems in pregnancy, as the infection more frequently causes severe complications than in unaffected pregnant women, or non-pregnant women with SARS-CoV-2 infection. Now that vaccination is available and rapidly getting implemented worldwide, the question arises whether pregnant women should be vaccinated, and if so, whether they should get priority. Methods. Available scientific data and available guidelines about vaccination against SARS-CoV-2 were collected by the Guideline Committee of the International Society of Infectious Diseases in Obstetrics and Gynecology (ISIDOG), and were analyzed, discussed and summarized as guidelines for health care workers caring for pregnant women. Concluding statements were graded according to the Oxford Evidence Based Medicine Grading System. Results. There is evidence to consider pregnancy as a risk factor for serious complications of COVID-19 infection, even in the absence of additional risk factors, such as hypertension, diabetes and obesity which increase these risks even more in pregnancy. Currently available data slightly favor mRNA-based vaccines above vector-based vaccines during pregnancy and breastfeeding, until more safety data become available. Conclusion. ISIDOG advices policy makers and societies to prioritize pregnant women to receive vaccination against SARS-CoV-2, and favor the mRNA vaccines until further safety information becomes available.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202104.0008.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: micronutrients supplementation; micronutrients deficiency; prevention and treatment; novel coronavirus; COVID-19; SARS; MERS
Online: 1 April 2021 (10:21:32 CEST)
Background: Micronutrients has roles in strengthening and maintaining immune function, but its supplementation and/or deficiency effects on respiratory tract infections are inconclusive. This review aims to systematically assess the associations between micronutrient supplementation or deficiency, with novel coronavirus incidence and disease severity. Methods: Systematic literature searches conducted in 5 electronic databases identified 751 unique studies, of which 33 studies (5 supplementation studies, 1 supplementation and deficiency study, and 27 deficiency studies) were eventually included in this review. Proportions of incidence and severity outcomes in each group, and adjusted summary statistics with their relevant 95% confidence intervaIs (CI) were extracted. Data from 19 studies were pooled in meta-analysis using the generic inverse variance method. Findings: A total of 360,346 patients across 16 countries, with a mean age between 32 and 87.7 years, were involved across 33 studies. All studies were on COVID-19 infections. In individuals without micronutrient deficiency, there was a significant reduction on odds of COVID-19 incidence (pooled OR: 0.37, 95% CI: 0.18, 0.78), and ICU admissions or severe/critical disease onset (pooled OR: 0.26, 95% CI: 0.08, 0.89). Insignificant protective effects were observed on other outcome measures – mortality, ICU admission, progression to respiratory-related complications, severe/critical disease onset or requiring respiratory support and hospitalization rate. Conclusion: The absence of micronutrient deficiency significantly reduced COVID-19 incidence and clinical deterioration in hospitalized patients. Usage of micronutrients as prophylaxis and complementary supplement in therapeutic management of COVID-19 patients may be a promising and cost-effective approach warranting in-depth investigation.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201810.0293.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Other Keywords: MRSA, MSSA, Staphylococcus aureus, mortality, gender, Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, infectious disease, prevention
Online: 15 October 2018 (09:35:59 CEST)
Average of 41,900 patients are diagnosed annually with staphylococcus bacterial infection in California, 24,089 patients have Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) and 17,810 patients have Methicillin-Sensitive Staphylococcus (MSSA). This paper demonstrates that there is a difference in mortality rate due to staphylococcus infection between males and females (P-value<0.05, CI 95%). Male patient diagnosed with S. aureus has 1.3 chance of mortality incidence than female patient. In addition, MRSA infection rate is 1.4 times MSSA infection (P-value<0.05, CI 95%), but the gap of infection is decreasing; however, mortality of both infections combined are more than threefold greater compared to three decades ago.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202010.0437.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Biochemistry Keywords: breast cancer; microbiota; bacteria; dysbiosis; pro-carcinogenic; anti-carcinogenic; genetics; next-generation sequencing; cancer treatments; cancer prevention
Online: 21 October 2020 (12:51:23 CEST)
One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer (BC) in their lifetime, resulting in over 2 million cases annually. BC is the most common cancer among women. Unfortunately, the etiology of majority of cases remains unknown. Recently, evidence has shown that the human microbiota plays an important role in health and disease. Intriguingly, studies have revealed the presence of microorganisms in human breast tissue, which was previously presumed to be sterile. Next-generation sequencing technologies have paved way for the investigation of breast microbiota, uncovering bacterial signatures that are associated with BC. Some of the bacterial species were found to possess pro-carcinogenic and/or anti-carcinogenic properties, suggesting that the breast microbiota has potentially crucial roles in maintenance of breast health. In this review, we summarize the recent findings on breast tissue microbiota and its interplay with BC. Bacterial signatures identified via next-generation sequencing as well as their impact on breast carcinogenesis and cancer therapies are reviewed. Correlation of breast tissue microbiota and other factors, such as geographical and racial differences, in BC is discussed. Additionally, we discuss the future directions of research on breast microbiota as well as its potential role in prevention, diagnosis and treatment of BC.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202209.0461.v1
Subject: Behavioral Sciences, Applied Psychology Keywords: Persuasive Technology; Malaria Prevention and Control Support System (MPCSS); active inter-vention tool; Mosquitoes; Malaria Related Deaths (MRDs)
Online: 29 September 2022 (08:49:42 CEST)
Malaria is one of the leading causes of illnesses and deaths in Africa at large and Nigeria in particular, especially amongst pregnant women and children under the age of five years. Our research revealed that though the government has deployed so many intervention systems to contend with this death-causing vector—the mosquitoes, malaria related deaths (MRDs) have continued to increase. This is because people have not sufficiently adopted those intervention systems to protect themselves. Further enquiries into the ineffective compliance of the people to the intervention systems revealed that the interventions are passive in nature. Based on these, we set up three measurable research outcomes to enable us to determine the appropriateness of persuasive technology in solving the malaria problem. We technically avoided a one-size-fits-all design approach and adopted Participatory System Design (PSD) and User-Centered Design (UCD) approaches in our system design methodologies. Well-structured questionnaires were used to extract information from the participants. The data obtained from the research survey was used in modeling the intervention system. The research was conducted in three phases: baseline, development and deployment of an intervention system—the Malaria Prevention and Control Support System (MPCSS), and an evaluation study to determine the performance of the intervention system. The research led to the following achievements: (1) encouraged an increase in the number of people who participated in malaria prevention and control activities by lowering the rate of malaria cases from 96.9% to 68.5% and increasing ownership of mosquito nets from 54% to 85.5%; (2) demonstrated that persuasive technology could be used to increase public awareness and knowledge of a given subject as noted in our evaluation result; and (3) demonstrated that persuasive technology is a veritable active intervention to combat malaria.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202108.0565.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Cardiology Keywords: primary prevention of sudden cardiac death; non-ischemic cardiomyopathy; ischemic cardiomyopathy; appropriate ICD therapy; mortality rate comparison
Online: 31 August 2021 (11:26:43 CEST)
(1) Background: In patients suffering from heart failure, the main causes of death are either he-modynamic failure, or ventricular arrhythmias. The only tool to significantly reduce arrhythmic sudden death is the implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD), but not all patients benefit to the same extend of these devices. (2) Methods: The primary outcome of this single center study was defined as cardiovascular death in patients with ischemic and non-ischemic heart failure who have benefited from ICD therapy. The secondary outcomes were death from any cause, sudden cardiac death, ICD-related therapies (appropriate antitachycardia pacing or shock therapy for ventricular tachycardia or fi-brillation) and recurrences of ventricular tachyarrhythmias. (3) Results: A total of 403 consecutive ICD recipients – symptomatic heart failure patients with ICD for the primary prevention of sudden cardiac death – were included retrospectively: 59% is-chemic cardiomyopathy (ICMP) and 41% non-ischemic cardiomyopathy (NICMP). Within a median follow-up period of 36 months, the incidence of cardiovascular mortality was not signif-icantly different in patients with NICMP and ICMP: the primary outcome had occurred in 9 pa-tients (5.4%) in the NICMP group and in 14 patients (5.9%) in the ICMP group (hazard ratio 1; 95%confidence interval [CI] 0.45 to 2.28; p =0.97). All-cause mortality occurred in 14 of 166 pa-tients (8.4%) in NICMP group and 18 of 237 patients (7.6%) in ICMP group. Sudden cardiac death occurred in 2 patients (1.2%) in the NICMP group and in 4 patients (1.7%) in the ICMP group (hazard ratio 0.71; 95% CI, 0.13 to 3.88; P=0.69). The rate of appropriate device therapies was comparable in both groups. (4) Conclusion: In this study, ICD implantation for primary prevention of sudden cardiac death in patients with symptomatic systolic heart failure was associated with similar rates of cardiovas-cular and all-cause mortality in patients with ischemic heart disease, and in patients with heart failure from other causes. NICMP and ICMP showed comparable rates of recurrent ventricular tachyarrhythmias and appropriate ICD therapies.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202106.0063.v1
Subject: Mathematics & Computer Science, Algebra & Number Theory Keywords: Churn 1; customer churn; customer segmentation; churn prevention; predictive churn model; recommendation system engine.
Online: 2 June 2021 (10:03:02 CEST)
The strategy of any organization is based on the growth of its customer base, and one of its principles is that selling a product to an existing customer is much more profitable than acquiring a new customer. However, this approach has several opportunities for improvement, since it usually has a totally reactive approach, which does not give opportunity to the areas specialized in customer experience and recovery, to give an effective response for that moment, since the customer is gone at the time of the intervention. This happens because usually a diagnostic analysis of customers who have stopped buying products or services in a defined period, commonly three (3) periods or months, is performed. This thesis work challenges the way to face this problem, and proposes the development of a complete solution, which does not focus exclusively on the prediction of churn, as is usually done in the state of the art research, but to intervene in different interactions that can be carried out with customers. The above focused not only to prevent customer churn, but to generate an added value of continuous improvement in sales processes, increase customer penetration, leading to an improvement in customer experience and consequently, an increase in customer loyalty.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201911.0018.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: suicide rate; suicide by pesticide; occupational group; suicide prevention; south korea; population-based study
Online: 3 November 2019 (15:46:54 CET)
Suicide is a major public health concern in South Korea, and self-poisoning by pesticides is one of the common methods of suicide. Pesticide ban policies have been successful for suicide prevention; however, no studies have shown their effect according to occupational groups. The present study analyzed suicide and suicide by pesticide rates among South Korean workers age 15-64 in 2003-2017, their associations with occupational groups, and the impact of three major economic indices on these factors. Workers in the agriculture, forestry, and fishery industries have relative risks of 5.62 (95% CI: 5.54-5.69) for suicide overall and 25.49 (95% CI: 24.46-26.57) for suicide by pesticide. The real gross domestic product (RGDP) has a positive association with suicide overall only in the last five-year period investigated in this study, and the unemployment rate consistently has a positive association. The economic status and policy for suicide prevention affect suicide and suicide by pesticide rates differently among occupational groups and different time periods. Policy addressing suicidal risk for different occupational groups should be of concern in South Korea.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201901.0311.v2
Subject: Mathematics & Computer Science, Other Keywords: optical networks; jamming attacks; machine learning; detection and prevention; routing and spectrum assignment; security
Online: 18 June 2019 (07:26:54 CEST)
Optical networks are prone to power jamming attacks intending service disruption. This paper presents a Machine Learning (ML) framework for detection and prevention of jamming attacks in optical networks. We evaluate various ML classifiers for detecting out-of-band jamming attacks with varying intensities. Numerical results show that artificial neural network is the fastest ($10^6$ detection per second) for inference and most accurate ($\approx 100 \%$) in detecting power jamming attacks as well as identifying the optical channels attacked. We also discuss and study a novel prevention mechanism when the system is under active jamming attacks. For this scenario, we propose a novel resource reallocation scheme that utilizes the statistical information of attack detection accuracy to lower the probability of successful jamming of lightpaths while minimizing lightpaths' reallocations. Simulation results show that the likelihood of jamming a lightpath reduces with increasing detection accuracy, and localization reduces the number of reallocations required.